Harry Potter FX Supervisor Talks 'Good' 3D for 'Deathly Hallows Part 2'

Visual Effects Supervisor Talks Very Good 3D in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2

One of the most refreshing things about Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 was the filmmakers’ decision to not upconvert the film to 3D. And, if hard box office numbers are anything to go by, it didn’t seem to hurt the film’s reception one iota.

Alas, we were not so lucky with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, which has gone through that post-conversion 3D process and will probably be released in more 3D theaters than 2D. Still, there’s hope yet for a quality 3D experience, as Harry Potter Visual Effects Supervisor Tim Burke recently praised the final film’s 3D.

When asked about creating the visual effects for Part 2, Burke said, (courtesy of Hero Complex):

We were past the wire, actually. We really pushed it right way to the end of any possible time on this one. We had the big conversion to 3D as well, and that sort of added a massive complication. So yeah, we’ve used every second we possibly could.

Speaking of the upconverted 3D, he said:

I think it’s good, actually. I think people are going to be really pleased. I know everyone’s a little nervous and skeptical of 3D these days, but the work has been done very, very well. We’ve done over 200 shots in 3D and in the visual effects as well, because so much of it is CG, so the results are very, very good. I think everyone’s going to be really impressed with it, actually.

Nearly ten years later, it’s hard to remember just how poor the special effects were in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. For a movie that had immense monetary backing from Warner Bros., top-notch production values in every other category, and one of the best casts in the history of fantasy adaptations, there seemed to be little concern for how the more fantastical elements came across onscreen. Trolls, centaurs, broomstick-flying wizards – all of it looked terrible, in terms of CGI.

One year later, that all changed with The Chamber of Secrets, a film with special effects that continue to hold up to this day (and will likely hold up in perpetuity). Dobby the House-Elf, the giant snake, broomstick-flying wizards – all of it looked exceedingly realistic and awesomely impressive. Sure, The Two Towers may have won the Best Visual Effects Oscar in 2002, badly-rendered wargs and all, but Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets deserved to.

Dobby the House Elf in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

The point is, Tim Burke, the man responsible for the massive leap in quality for Harry Potter’s special effects between the first and the second film - and the continued quality ever since - knows what he’s talking about when it comes to this sort of thing. That said, he’s also an employee of Warner Bros. who specifically worked on the film he’s praising, so his word on the issue isn't exactly unbiased.

Regardless, Warner Bros. has had the time – and they certainly have the money – to craft some serviceable, if not quality, 3D for the final Harry Potter film. This won’t be Clash of the Titans or The Last Airbender. But that doesn’t mean that this particular Screen Rant writer is going to pay the extra five dollars (or whatever) to see either serviceable or quality upconverted 3D.






Lastly, Burke also discussed the final scene in the film at King’s Cross – which had to be reshot – wherein Harry, Ron, and Hermione are older and sending their own children off to Hogwarts:

Oh, yeah, they actually had to re-shoot that. I’d even forgotten about that already. Because they were re-shooting it, they couldn’t go to King’s Cross, where it was staged. So they shot it with green screen, and we had to put King’s Cross in. So that was a surprise. I’d forgotten it all. And then they did some sort of makeup for the aging. But then at the very end, after the audience screening, they asked us to start enhancing it to make the kids seem older. So that was another surprise. See, you just forget these things. I think it’s called therapy. You just try and blank them.







How do you feel about the final Harry Potter film being released in 3D? Will you be watching it in 2D or 3D, if you have your druthers? Let us know in the comments.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 hits theaters July 15th, 2011.

Source: Hero Complex

Follow me on Twitter @benandrewmoore.

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