Daring Journey
October 9, 2012

Daring Journey

The Mill creates VFX for Sinbad series
Sinbad may have sailed the seven seas, but in the action/adventure television series “Sinbad,” his voyages would have been impossible had it not been for the visual effects generated by The Mill.

“Sinbad,” a 12-part series that began in July, is an Impossible Pictures production for Sky and BBC Worldwide, with assistance of Nine Network Australia. 

The series focuses on the tale of Sinbad: After Sinbad accidentally kills the son of the powerful Lord Akbari, Sinbad's brother is killed as a blood debt. Sinbad is then banished from his homeland of Basra, Iraq, and cast out to sea on The Providence. Now Sinbad must embark on an epic quest to rid himself of the curse placed on him by his own grandmother and embrace his new destiny.

And so his high-seas adventure begins.

The Mill created a number of key shots to help drive the action and drama—nearly 500 VFX shots in total. For instance, the facility turned the streets of Valletta, Malta, into ancient Basrah, intercutting live action and CG. The artists also constructed a CG vessel, on which Sinbad is a stow-away, complete with billowing sails. 

Perhaps the biggest challenge was creating the CG water—calm seas, crashing waves, turbulent water. The crew also modeled and animated CG creatures out of water using simulations. 

Will Cohen, The Mill TV and Film’s Managing Director, explains, “If computer-generated imagery is a tool for storytellers to use when something cannot be shot in camera, then Sky/Impossible Pictures’ new series ‘Sinbad’ provided ample opportunity for The Mill TV and Film to collaborate with them by creating effects, environments and creatures with an elemental tone to bring scale, scope and drama to their exciting new fantasy series. It has been a great show to work on bringing film-quality VFX to the small screen.”