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Project Info

Release Date: December 26th, 2014

Client

Director

Angelina Jolie

Distributor

Universal Pictures

Overall VFX Supervisor

Bill George

Rodeo FX Crew

VFX Supervisor

Matthew Rouleau

VFX Producer

Tara Conley

Compositing Supervisor

Ara Khanikian

We completed 240 stunning visual effects shots for Angelina Jolie’s World War II biopic, including the breathtaking air combat between the B24s and the Zero fighter planes.

For this film about the war hero “Louie” Zamperini, we created most of the elements of the sequence depicting with infinite precision the bombing of the Japanese-held island of Nauru – the Super Man bomber, the fleet of B24s, the Japanese Zero fighter planes – everything was created as CG imagery with extraordinary realism.

Our team also created digital set extensions through matte painting. The island, the airstrip, the soldiers running around, the buildings, most of the sky and the surrounding forest are all digitally created elements. We also added numerous explosions, missile strikes and bullet holes to add realism to battle scenes.

One of the most complex scenes is when Zamperini’s Super Man damaged plane lands on the Funafuti airstrip. In this landing sequence, one of the tires blows out at ground contact and the plane skids and crashes into a pile of rocks. Our team created the landing gear and the tire in 3D, added sand and dirt and spent hours of animation and simulation to allow a close-up shot of a striking realism.

Unbroken received three Academy Award nominations and a 2015 VES Award nomination in the Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Photoreal / Live Action Feature Motion Picture category.

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