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Melbourne VFX studios raise the bar in Marvel hit Shang-Chi
Award-winning Melbourne VFX studios Luma Pictures and Method Studios share what it was like to work on the new Marvel blockbuster, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.
Leaping into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Luma Pictures and Method Studios—two of Victoria’s most acclaimed and highly sought-after VFX studios—have created some of the high-calibre VFX sequences on Marvel's latest release, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.
Having produced award-winning visual effects on some of the world’s biggest titles including Black Panther, Spider-Man: Far From Home and Game of Thrones, both studios are recognised on a global scale for their exceptional world-building, characters, and effects.
"We created CG versions of the bus and passengers and a city environment, in addition to complex CG work utilising deep learning technology. The result is a photorealistic, action-packed sequence which we couldn’t be more proud of."
— Linda Luong, Senior VFX Producer at Luma Pictures
Luma’s relationship with Marvel spans over a decade—beginning with the first Thor film in 2011—and has since collaborated with Marvel on many of their blockbusters. For Shang-Chi, the studio was awarded 177 shots across three major sequences.
“Having worked on a fight sequence onboard a moving train in Captain Marvel, we were thrilled to collaborate with the team again on a similar sequence in Shang-Chi–this time onboard a bus!” said Luma Pictures’ Senior VFX Producer, Linda Luong.
“We created CG versions of the bus and passengers and a city environment, in addition to complex CG work utilising deep learning technology," continued Linda. "The result is a photorealistic, action-packed sequence which we couldn’t be more proud of."
Marvel Studios' Shang-Chi and The Legend of The Ten Rings stars Simu Liu as Shang-Chi, who must confront the past he thought he left behind when he is drawn into the web of the mysterious Ten Rings organisation.
The film also stars Tony Leung as Wenwu, Awkwafina as Shang-Chi's friend Katy and Michelle Yeoh as Jiang Nan, as well as Fala Chen, Meng'er Zhang, Florian Munteanu and Ronny Chieng.
"We were given creative freedom to go "10 times bigger" with a particularly dynamic effect in Shang-Chi. It was a lot of fun to create and the result is a sequence that looks very dramatic, very cool, and very Marvel."
— Gabriel Mandela, Senior Compositor at Method Studios
Shang-Chi was Method Studios Melbourne’s first time working with Marvel. Marvel’s VFX Supervisor Chris Townsend and VFX Producer Damien Carr approached the Melbourne team after seeing their Emmy-Award winning work on the ‘Battle of the Bastards’ scene in Game of Thrones.
“The scene in Game of Thrones had an army of people and horses and the sequence they had us in mind for in Shang-Chi was along the same lines,” said Method Studios’ VFX Executive Producer, Ineke Majoor.
“Ultimately we were awarded 110 shots in five main sequences, each one unique and complicated. Our team was excited to work on their first Marvel project and to be encouraged to bring their creativity and experience to such demanding sequences,” shared Majoor.
"We were given creative freedom to "go 10 times bigger" with a particularly dynamic effect in Shang-Chi. It was a lot of fun to create and the result is a sequence that looks very dramatic, very cool, and very Marvel," said Method Studios’ Senior Compositor, Gabriel Mandela.
Film Victoria supported the Melbourne studios to secure VFX packages on the film by providing Marvel with competitive financial incentives through the Victorian Screen Incentive.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is screening now in Australian cinemas. Studio images supplied by Luma Pictures. Shang-Chi images supplied by Marvel Studios.
For more information about the Victorian Screen Incentive, contact Joe Brinkmann, Manager — Production Attraction & Support, Film Victoria, at [email protected].