JANUARY 2008 UPDATE
01/01/08Guillermo Del Toro's HELLBOY 2 THE GOLDEN ARMY kept us busy for the major part of 2007, and was a hugely rewarding experience. Our work on the all action sequel included a number of turnkey characters based upon designs by Wayne Barlowe, as well as costume and CG scanning elements.
Nick Broomfield’s controversial drama documentary THE BATTLE FOR HADITHA contains some graphic recreations of atrocities committed during the Iraq conflict.
We couldn’t pass up the opportunity to work on Juan Carlos Fresnadillos’ sequel to 28 DAYS LATER. On 28 WEEKS LATER we not only handled all of the special makeup effects but all of the ‘infected’ characters as well. More graphic than the first film, and decidedly more genre in tone, the film was a delight to work on from start to finish and showcased a number of startling makeup effects including the infamous helicopter sequence.
Prior to this we set off for a gloomy forest in Ireland for Paddy Breathnach’s teen horror “SHROOMS”. We were responsible for all the makeup and creature effects in the film as well as a number of character prosthetics.
Ed Zwick’s hard hitting feature “BLOOD DIAMOND” starred Leonardo Di Caprio and Jennifer Connelly and kept us busy supplying corpses and makeup effects for Neil Corbould special effects, during the tail end of 2005/2006. The project also saw the end of Alan Hedgcocks involvement with Creature Effects.
Nacho Cerda’s “THE ABANDONED” which we shot in Bulgaria during 2005, turned out to be a great project to work on. Co written with Richard (Hardware) Stanley, this grim adult ghost story deserved its critical plaudits Stateside.
Interestingly Cerda was one of the directors thought to be responsible for the Infamous Roswell Alien footage that surfaced in the UK during the mid 90’s, we of course knew differently, having been the first fx company to examine the footage and declare that the alien was just a rubber guy. Thing’s came full circle for us a decade after the original in 2005 when we found ourselves helping to recreate the footage, (along with the man originally responsible John Humphreys) for the spoof movie “ALIEN AUTOPSY” starring Brit comedians Ant and Dec. It also brought us back into contact with many of the protoganists involved with the original footage, an interesting experience to say the least. Ray Santilli now maintains that the autopsy footage was a ‘restoration’ which still contained some frames from the original, which is of course just away of getting round any potential fraud charges. Allegedly!During this year we also made a corpse for the Thora Birch horror DARK CORNERS.
Tv work since our last update has included numerous make-ups and effects for THE BILL, ITV’s long running cop series , and for the ambitious though sadly short lived THE GOLDEN HOUR, a drama based around a helicopter air ambulance team. A dummy built by creature effects to show a roadside thoracotomy operation proved so lifelike that it started an association with the real life HEMS team to produce training apparatus for this life or death operation. Other tv included THE COMMANDER and QUATERMASS.
The promo for STOP ME by MARK RONSON gave us the chance to do a two stage fat makeup.
Creature Effects continues to go from strength to strength and I am hugely indebted to those who have worked alongside me over the last few years ; in particular, Andy Garner, Dave Bonneywell, Steve Painter, Ant Parker, Darren Robinson, Simon Rose, Justin Pitkethley, Bill Turpin, Lisa Crawley, Lotta Haagvist, Ian Morse, Hannah Bettell, Maria Swindell, Jessica Moore, Mat O' Toole and Dee Sherwood Wallace
New photos from all these projects as well as new personal work has been added throughout the PORTFOLIO GALLERIES. We'll post some pics of our HELLBOY II: THE GOLDEN ARMY work a little closer to the films release date but you can get a taste of our work in the movie's trailer which can be found at www.hellboymovie.com