Wednesday, February 09, 2011

CGI Character Design

"I don't personally respond to the design in "Beowulf," "Polar Express," "Christmas Carol," "Final Fantasy" or anything that skews toward realism. There's an eye-contact issue with those characters. It never seems like they're making eye contact with each other -- they kind of have dead eyes. It's an eye-tracking issue. There's always this blank stare look.

"And if you look at "Polar Express," for example, they tried to make the main characters that Tom Hanks played look kinda like Tom Hanks and in some instance really trying to look like Tom Hanks. That's going beyond making your character look real -- you're trying to make him look like one of the most well-known personalities in the world. I would much rather see Tom Hanks in a movie than I would want to see a facsimile of Tom Hanks."

Salon interviews character designer Shannon Tindle.


Anonymous said...

Really doing your part to support the Toronto animation industry eh? Opening day for Gnomeo at the theater, and you're showcasing an article tearing it apart. Nice timing. There's going to be no work left in this city at all before long.

Mark Mayerson said...

Shawn Tindle said nothing negative about Gnomeo and Juliet and I thought his comments on character design were worth linking to.

I would point out that my review of 9, made at the same studio, was highly complimentary to the crew.

I didn't editorialize in any way, shape or form about Gnomeo.
As I have not seen the film, I have nothing to say about it.

JPilot said...

To be fair to Mark, whatever position he takes has absolutely no influence good or bad as to the survival of the Toronto animation industry. Cartoon Brew commentators are some of the harshest critics and they have been giving very positive feedback about Gnomeo.
But it all means diddly squat, since the project was service work, whether it is a big belly flop or a monstrous hit, as long as Toronto studios so not produce their own intellectual property, their survival will always be in question. If the film flops, it's the "outsourced studio in Canada"s fault. If it's a huge hit, it's the foreign producers, the musical talent and superstar voice casting that will get the laurels and the return business.