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‘Rogue One’ Animation Supervisor Hal Hickel Goes Deep Into the Process Behind K-2SO and the Battle of Scarif

Discussion in 'SWNN News Feed' started by SWNN Probe, Dec 23, 2021.

  1. SWNN Probe

    SWNN Probe Seeker

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    In a recent interview with ILM's Publicity Group, Visual Effects Animator Hal Hickel went deep into the making of Rogue One from the visual effects side of things. Hickel worked on the movie as an animation supervisor and had a lot to share, in particular, about the process of bringing the droid K-2SO (played by Alan Tudyk) to life and creating the final battle on Scarif. This comes after director Gareth Edwards was interviewed by StarWars.com, celebrating the five-year anniversary of the film.



    Hickel started by talking about K-2SO. Apparently, it was Edwards' idea to create a droid 'with an expressive face.' But that wasn't really something Star Wars had explored before, as Hickel said:



    He went on to talk about how they approached K-2SO's eyes, and how blinking was not an option, but the movement of the eyes was a great way to communicate that the droid's face was more expressive than the Star Wars droids we were used to:



    [​IMG]



    One of the team's main focuses was to make clear distinctions between this new droid and the classic protocol droid:



    But after the design of the character, they needed to bring Alan Tudyk in to 'try on the costume.' Here's the process as he described it:



    [​IMG]



    An interesting detail about the making of K-2SO is that there are two scenes in Rogue One that were rendered in real-time, that is, while cameras were rolling. As Hickel describes, this is a technology they were really invested in and genuinely wanted to push forward, which is now something employed quite regularly in projects like The Mandalorian:



    The conversation then shifted towards the making of the Battle of Scarif, the third act of the film. As Hickel described, this was a rare opportunity for him as a visual effects person to contribute to the actual story that was being told on-screen. Both Hickel and John Knoll (the VFX legend who pitched the story for the movie) were in meetings with Lucasfilm's Kiri Hart, Dave Filoni, and Pablo Hidalgo to discuss what would happen in the third act:



    [​IMG]



    One of the big moments of that space battle was when the Rebels made two Star Destroyers collide with each other. This was handled by animator Euising Lee, who did an amazing job developing the scene off of a brief description:



    George Lucas always referred to the music as the lifeblood of Star Wars, and Hal Hickel proves why that is the case, as he describes what it was like seeing that final battle in the cinema:



    Hickel has always been someone who likes to dive deep into his craft. In an interview with our own Resistance Broadcast crew in early 2021, the longtime ILM animator talked at length about the visual effects that were used in The Mandalorian Season 2.



    The legacy of Rogue One will continue in 2022 with the release of Andor, the spin-off prequel series led by Diego Luna. It will be released between July and September on Disney Plus. We look forward to what Hal Hickel and the pioneering effects team at ILM have in store for us in what will be the biggest year in Star Wars content history.



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    #1 SWNN Probe, Dec 23, 2021
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2021
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  2. daRinze

    daRinze Force Sensitive

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    Dear @SWNN Probe there still is a bug everytime you report a hotlink : extra characters are added to the end of the link, making it unusable.

    For example, if you explore the link above in the quote excerpt, you'll notice the associated URL is : https://www.ilm.com/hal-hickel-discusses-rogue-one/'%20 rel='noopener
    The latter part, from the last slash to the last character, /'%20 rel='noopener, is really unwanted, and what makes the link fail.
    Hope you'll be able to fix that in the future.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
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