The release of Sam Mendes’ Spectre marks another winning collaboration between Framestore and Daniel Kleinman, who bring together theirs years of past experience on Bond to create yet another stunning tittle sequence for the franchise.
The VFX shoot took three days in which to collect the many stylistic elements and special effects to be used throughout the sequence. Fiery elements were supplemented with macro work in a tank, capturing high-speed droplets of ink in water, which would be used extensively, particularly around the dancing female figures and in the memory sequence. The CG simulations were technically intricate, especially when paired with the challenge of using archived footage from past Bond films. ‘It’s quite easy for it to look a bit stuck-on – the pieces come from different environments, were shot on different cameras, one of them is underwater – yet we needed to make them look like they were all shot for this sequence. We were able to use the song lyric, about shattering glass, to our advantage, stylising the sequence in a way that brings all of the past elements together’.
The glassy reflections and refractions also gave the artists an opportunity to use V-Ray in Nuke, a tool that allowed improved 3D-style rendering. Otherwise it was ‘the usual suspects’ on software: ‘Maya for animation, Houdini for a lot of effects, and Nuke of course for Compositing. We started the job expecting to render all the creature and asset work with Maya and Arnold, and all the effects work with Houdini and Mantra. As we got into the job though, we found that the varying looks and flexible creative requirements from one section to the next meant that we tried every combination of Maya, Houdini, Arnold and Mantra at some stage across the whole sequence. In the end, the majority of the CG was finished in Houdini’.