An article in “Variety” yesterday announced the teaming up of two special effects driven directors Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson for a (what else!) film trilogy adaption of Tintin, the venerable long-running comic book series. I guess that’s not the big news for me, but rather how they are choosing to go about doing it. I guess it’s not too surprising considering Jackson’s SFX background, but the film makers are opting to use “performance capture” which is a fancy, new fangled word for “motion capture”. Jackson says, “we’re making them look photorealistic; the fibers of their clothing, the pores of their skin and each individual hair. They look exactly like real people— but real Herge (ed:the series creator) people!”
As with Beowulf, my question is “why???” What is the point of creating photorealistic, human characters when you can just, oh I don’t know, shoot live actors? Tintin’s cast of characters, while having human proportions, are very illustrative. I don’t know if I feel like looking at Captain Haddock’s pores. What’s the point of taking what is obviously an illustrative characiture of real life and shoe horning it into reality?
Maybe I’m wrong. Dr.Suess purists are crying foul with Blue Sky’s take on Horton Hears A Who where I actually like those designs. At this point, I’m very skeptical and the project is some time off, but I would like to be proven wrong. Guess I’ll find out in a few years.