What if ‘Monster Trucks’ really were powered by giant, gas-guzzling monsters, sat in the engine block where the motor should be and spinning the axles with their enormous tentacles? This is the conceit behind Paramount Picture’s new kids’ movie ‘Monster Trucks’ from ‘Ice Age’ director Chris Wedge and ‘Jurassic World’ screenwriter Derek Connolly.
High school student Tripp (Lucas Till, who plays Havok in the ‘X-Men’ series) befriends one of the hapless monsters when it takes up residence in his run-down Dodge pick-up, having been accidentally released along with its friends from an underground ecosystem where the monsters have lived undisturbed for thousands of years. A shadowy oil and gas company that is drilling nearby was responsible for releasing the monsters, and Tripp and his new friend embark on a race to stop the evil corporate boss (Rob Lowe) and his goons from poisoning their habitat.
‘Monster Trucks’ was an opportunity for Prime Focus to deliver another full stereo conversion for long-term client Corey Turner (Paramount VP, 3D Post Production). PFW stereographer James Rees led the conversion, working closely with Corey to produce a 3D version of the film that complemented and enhanced the fun and action.
“This is a kids’ monster movie so we had plenty of opportunities to have fun with the conversion,” said James Rees, PFW Stereographer. “Corey ensured we had the elements packages for the CG, so we were able to use the z-depths as a starting point for the monsters and their crazy tentacles, really taking advantage of the 3D to exaggerate them.”
“The CG assets were also useful when it came to the scenes with the monsters in the water,” continued James. “They glow a phosphorescent green on contact with water, which looks really cool, and we used the CG elements to deal with the depth in the water, setting up a layer for the water surface and creating depth from there.”
James supervised the PFW team to deliver the 1,800 shots for ‘Monster Trucks’ in just six weeks, despite the challenges that the movie posed for conversion.
“Unsurprisingly there are lots of chase sequences in the movie,” explained James. “The trucks kick up dust, gravel and rocks, and we spent time placing these elements in depth so that they appear to be flying out of the screen at the audience. Same for the manic sequence at the start of the film when the monsters first emerge from the ground. We had jets of oil and water flying everywhere and raining back down, and the team did a great job of setting the fluids and the debris in depth.”
‘Monster Trucks’ opens on January 13, 2017 in the U.S.
RELEASE: January 13, 2017 (US), December 26, 2016 (UK)
Director: Chris Wedge
Studios / Distributors: Paramount Pictures
Executive Producer View-D - Rohan Desai
Show Creative Supervisor - James Rees
Stereo Producer - Monika Hada Stereo Production Manager - Cassius Vaz
Senior Technical Director - Isaac Guenard
Editorial Supervisor - Richard Pring TD - Charlie Luce
Stereo Digital Production Team - Reshma Jhangimal, Annsh Patel
View-D Creative Leads - Rio Harrington, Matthew Lutes, Nicole Nagata