The Killer ‘invisible VFX’ video leaves fans speechless with surprise revelation: ‘It just won the VFX Oscar with one tweet’ | Hollywood News


Fans of director David Fincher’s recent Netflix film, The Killer, was left astonished on Wednesday, as the visual effects house Wylie Co. VFX shared a video breakdown of a sequence in which the central character was revealed to have been entirely computer generated. Fincher’s films are known for their invisble effects, and in a thread posted on X, Wylie Co said that its ‘ultimate goal’ with the sequence was to ensure that nobody notices that the protagonist is a CGI creation.

The sequence in question takes place early in the film, after the titular assassin, played by Michael Fassbender, botches a hit-job and flees the scene of the crime. He jumps onto a scooter and races to safety along the streets of Paris at nighttime. The breakdown video revealed that Fassbender was fully computer-generated in the sequence, including close-up shots of his face, behind a helmet.

Wylie Co. wrote that the decision to create a ‘digi-double’ for the actor was taken after Fincher was unimpressed by footage they shot in the studio. “The quality of the work had to seamlessly cut back to back between live action shots of The Killer on set,” the VFX house wrote, adding, “Because of this there were no HDRI’s or usable array footage and sparse reference photos. The lighting and lookdev had to be dialed in by eye. We began with the Killer asset, adding fine facial detail and cloth simulations. We then used photogrammetry to assist with cascading streetlight timing and travel speed. The final result was high res meticulously crafted nearly full CG shots cut into the live action sequence with the ultimate goal of nobody noticing.”


Fans were left speechless. “Amazing work! Well Done! Not for a second I thought it was CG,” one person wrote. Another person wrote, “People keep asking stuff like WHY WAS MINDHUNTER SO EXPENSIVE? Because of this, because Fincher has been extremely in love with using A LOT of seamless CGI that no one in their right mind would assume it’s CGI. That takes a lot of preparation work and time making it, meaning $$$.” Director Brian Duffield remarked, “The Killer just won the VFX Oscar with a single tweet, right.”

The Killer is Fincher’s second film for Netflix, following Mank. The director was instrumental in the streamer’s launch, executive producing its first original series, House of Cards, a decade ago. He also produced Mindhunter and Love. Death. Robots. and the video essay series Voir for the platform. Wylie Co’s post suggests that there are more VFX reels of this kind to come.

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