PARIS — Director Alex Proyas’ new film Gods of Egypt used SolidAnim's SolidTrack system for its visual effects previs. The Lionsgate film opened on February 26th and has grossed $74.6 million worldwide. The fantasy film features ancient Egyptian deities and stars Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Brenton Thwaites, Chadwick Boseman, Elodie Yung, Courtney Eaton, Rufus Sewell, Gerard Butler, and Geoffrey Rush.
The setting of Anubis' temple was filmed at Centennial Park in Sydney, and visual effects were added over the scene. In the film, the gods in humanoid form are 9 feet tall and in "battle beast" form are over 12 feet tall. Proyas used forced perspective and motion control photography to portray the difference in height between the actors portraying the gods and the humans. For the Sphinx, actor Kenneth Ransom portrayed the giant creature via motion capture. And for the god Thoth, who can appear as many copies, actor Chadwick Boseman was filmed hundreds of times from different angles.
The SolidTrack system was used for previs of these scenes while shooting them in realtime. SolidTrack is a realtime camera tracking solution for recording camera moves and data logging of camera moves on the virtual set. This markerless camera tracking system can be used both indoors and outdoors with the same high quality results.
Youenn Denis, SolidTrack operator, was on-set with SolidTrack operator Neil Jouanjean, supervised by supervisor of SolidTrack operations, Isaac Patrouche, during five months of filming. Youenn Denis notes, "I worked directly with Phil Sullivan, Proof/MoBu operator, executive producer Topher Dow, video split operator Michael Taylor, VFX producer Jack Geist and VFX supervisor Eric Durst. They used SolidTrack on-set as it allowed them to accomplish things they were unable to do previously."
"We utilized SolidTrack to pre-visualize the actors' performance in set with context of designed-but-not-yet-realized CG sets or environments,” notes Dow. “SolidTrack helped us all on-set to get our bearings in an otherwise disorienting expanse of green screen."