Image Effects DUNE: My Wonderful Work! by cecilia
Brain Drain on the Train

These two scenes are perfect examples of how special effects helps keep the cost of projects down.

They both take place on a train traveling on Arrakis. Instead of building a train, laying down tracks, and constructing a city beside the tracks, they only had to create the interior of a traincar. The actors sat in the car and green screen was placed outside the "windows".

Plus they made a set which would be seen through the train "windows", but they used this set or parts of it in other shots. For these scenes they ran the camera along its own "track" (usually tracks on planks of plywood to keep the camera steady) and filmed everyday Freemen going about their everyday life. Basically the camera moved along as if it was the "train".

Man, Is It Green Outside!

In the first scene they shot Alec Newman, Saskia Reeves and Dr. Yueh (Robert Russell) in the traincar.

The Green screen is nice and even and there wasn't a problem pulling a matte with these shots.

Lady Jessica and son take a train ride

In the second scene it's the Duke and his son on the train. There's a bit more green spill in this shot but really that was not much of a problem. I seem to recall doing something with multiple-mattes to deal with the spill issue. That is: doing a different color correction on the problem parts of the set and compositing that second layer with the first layer.

Duke Leto and son take a train ride


Once I had a matte and composited the running footage as a background I really only had to make sure the color of the "outside" matched the color temperature on the interior of the traincar. A bit of color correction and everything looks like it belongs together.

Obviously there were no real windows on this train. So I had to fake them. I did that by duplicating the foreground frame (the frame with the actors in it), using half of it - say the left side with Paul in it - and by various manipulations make the new layer shadowy and transparent and of course slightly offset so it looks like a reflection in a window (which does not exist!) I duplicated the right side of the frame and naturally had to give it a different offset from Paul's reflection, but did the same voodoo there.

first composite

Adding to the Comp

I had added the reflections in the non-existent windows and the shot was approved. A month or so later I find out that the Sci Fi channel wants the windows to be more obvious. So I added some texturing to the background footage and voila! Perfect Windows!

I'm so Brilliant....;)

Seriously, just making the background a bit "mottled" like the viewer was looking at the scene through bathroom shower glass gave it enough of a separation that the effect fools the eye. This shot listed on the AI Effects site

Click on the smaller images to see the full size (in all it's glory).

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