I started working on Man of Steel as an effects technical director. Then a few months in, I was given the opportunity to become an effects lead, I was pretty happy about it,especially considering that this was my first movie project.
At the early stages I was given the responsibility of doing R&D for deforming metals that we needed for the cars destruction and other metal deforming things throughout the movie. I ended up building a set of procedural tools for general deforming metals, that I then used to build a complete vehicle rig, that can be applied to any vehicle modeled with the rig in mind. The rig obviously allowed us to destroy the cars, with deforming metal body parts, smashed windows, properly moving drive train with rotating wheels, opening and closing doors, all dynamically through a simulation. The basic bricks that I built ended up being a part of the whole destruction pipeline on this show and other subsequent shows. I then started working on building and ground destruction shots, for which I also had to build some procedural tools, to do ground procedural deformations, then add secondary simulations on top to generate the main sims and their secondary elements such as rubble and sand. I also worked on explosions and meteor trails. Along the way I had to also build many smaller tools that were used throughout the show.
Leading wise it was a great experience, I had to manage two sub-sequences, the fight in metrolpolis and the end sequences. So I had to be the link between the FXTDs, production, the sequence supe and the FX supe, to try and realise the vision of the VFX supe while keeping everything on track technically and in a timely manner. Keeping communication going with all departments was a big part as well, to make sure everything we are getting from modeling, layout and lighting is exactly what is needed and everything we are giving out to lighting or comp would work for them the way it is intended to.
All in all it was tiresome but a great experience, I am glad I was a part of it, I’ve worked with some very nice very talented people. And I was given the opportunity to be a lead on my first movie project. If you haven’t seen the movie yet, what are you waiting for!