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Wreck it Ralph – Bringing Characters to life (FMX 2013 Talk)

wreck it ralph bringing characters to life fmx 2013

Wreck it Ralph – Bringing Characters to life (FMX 2013 Talk)

I’m in Stuttgart at the moment for the FMX festival. There’s an animation festival and series of very good conferences here so I thought I’d come along to see it all. Yesterday was my first day at FMX, I spent all day there and saw so many inspirational talks and presentations it was difficult for me to define what I enjoyed most. Anyhow… here is the first of some things that stood out!

Wreck it Ralph – Bringing Characters to life

wreck it ralph bringing characters to life fmx 2013

The first talk was by Renato dos Anjos, an animation supervisor from Disney. He was talking about wreck it ralph’s character development and animation. It gave a good insight into Disney’s process for coming up with the 3D characters in their movies:

  • Whenever a draft of the character model is done they want to see it move as soon as possible. Usually a week will be given to do a rig and broad animation test. The changes resulting from this will then be sent back to modelling and rigging for adjustments (this usually caries on in a cycle for several weeks / months).
  • The main trend that seems to come up is that they think it is better to do hundreds of rough pieces of work rather than try to get too committed straight away. Their motto is to work fast and try lots.
  • When they get to a stage they call 80% the character is about ready for productions and may even start to be used in initial shots.
  • Most main characters take around 4 months to fully develop into the final version of the model / rig.
  • For some characters (particularly the candy king in Sugarush) they decided to have 2D animator Eric Goldberg do some hand drawn tests to make the ideas a little more crazy. His tests then heavily influenced the final version of Candy King and made the animation ideas far more unique.
  • On a final note, apparently the simple game style animation was very hard to achieve. They actually started off animating too realistically and had to simplify it a lot to get the final result.

Feature film animator.

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