Special Effects Lend Great Detail to “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix”

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Aug 21, 2007

Posted by SueTLC
Uncategorized

Over the years we have told you about the special effects used in the Harry Potter movies, and today we have more as there is an excellent new feature online which details at length the many processes and effects used in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. This lengthy and very technical feature spotlights many of the sequences in the fifth Harry Potter film, noting on details such as Grawp (“A team of nine animators worked on the character animation, making continuity and consistency a high priority”), certain effects in the film such as Ginny’s Reducto spell in the Ministry (“Dynamite was used to drive the collapse and break-up of the shelves, along with the animation of the spheres and stands that crash to the floor in a myriad of splintered shards”), and even pivotal scenes such as the encounter between Bellatrix and Sirius at the Veil (“Bellatrix’s wand attack on Sirius used fluid dynamics and displacement effects to create a uniquely aggressive version of the Avada Kedavara spell with its characteristic green cast. To emphasise the dreadful effect on Sirius, Gary Oldman’s skin colour was progressively drained over several shots leaving him pale and ashen, clouding was added to his eyes imparting a blank, dead look.”)

A fair number of companies were involved in creating the many various special effects seen in “Order of the Phoenix,” and while we have previously posted here on TLC portions found in this article before, such as the feature on Kreacher from Framestore CFC, this new article from fxguide details the fine and meticulous work done by other companies such as Double Negative, Rising Sun Pictures, MPC, and Framestore CFC. One company summarizes their involvement with the Harry Potter films, with the following excerpt from the article:

Over a period of 19 months Double Negative fielded a team of well over 250 artists, developers and technicians to deliver approximately 950 finished VFX shots for the film, a record for any one vendor in the history of the Harry Potter film series. “This was a unique opportunity for us to get involved at a very early stage on one of the largest visual effects projects in the world,” comments Paul Franklin. “It was a privilege to work so closely with the Harry Potter production team and I believe that the outstanding work produced by our artists will help raise our profile to the highest possible level.”

Thanks very much Chance!





20 Responses to Special Effects Lend Great Detail to “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix”

Avatar Image says:

the special effects are really cool in the movie grawmp looks exactly like i imagined he would!!

p.s. im first? yay

Avatar Image says:

The special effects were top notch! I specially loved the duels! :D

Avatar Image says:

I agree: the special effects have always been really good but ORDER OF THE PHOENIX outshone evcerything else!! Especially in the final battle between Voldemort and Dumbledore. But if I were them, I wouldn’t be so proud of the green effect achieved for the spell which killed Sirius, since it’s supposed to be a red Stunning Spell!! (its the only detail I was botherd by in the latest movie)

Avatar Image says:

When I first read OotP, I literally had to go back and read again to make sure Sirius had died. His death wasn’t crystal clear from the get go. People had to realize crossing the veil caused death and all the way till the end readers were hopeful Sirius hadn’t really died.

I think they wanted to avoid that in the movie. The movie audience already knows Avada Kedavra kills and once Sirius got hit, it was obvious he was a goner. Had they done it like in the book, viewers who’ve never read the book would have gone ‘Huh? What the heck happened?

Avatar Image says:

Every time I watch the movie, I become more impressed with the special effects. Can’t wait to see what they come up with for movies 6 and 7.

Avatar Image says:

Of course they should be proud of the green AK spell. That’s what they were asked for, and that’s what they supplied. It certainly wasnt a mistake by the FX people. It was done on purpose, as someone above said, because they wanted to leave no ambiguity about Sirius being dead. I cant wait to go see it again… the affects they did with his death seem cool, tho I missed them on the previous 4 viewing. :P

Avatar Image says:

this was by far the best movie. percentage-wise it had a whole lot more from the book than the other movies (prefect badges, mimbulus mibletonia, and young sirius saying “nice one james!” after expelliarmus like the older sirius). yates didn’t have to include any of this, but he did and he really captured the soul of the book. after watching this, i could tell he really loves the series

Avatar Image says:

Did anyone else think this feature would be a [i]video[/i] feature? I mean, they’re talking about [i]visual[/i] effects. Very detailed and interesting I guess. I just wish we’d been able to actually [i]see[/i] all of this visual editing and creating that they’re talking about. Listening to someone talking about “editing plates” and “working up particle systems” is pretty hard to understand without visuals. Unless of course you’re in the industry, which I guess is who this feature is really directed at.

Avatar Image says:

the movie did look great, i agree. but what still gets me is harry handing over the prophesy to lucius?!? come on!!! you’ve got the visual effects down, now get the story right!!!! (Whew!! that felt good!!)

Avatar Image says:

hermy65- harry was doing it for his friends. he didn’t want his friends to die. and anyway, it was a minor detail, it led to a rather great enterance by sirius and it broke the prophecy.

i also loved the movie and i loved the shaky camera when harry chased bellatrix and feel of the whole thing.

Avatar Image says:

i never thought of it like that! he would do it for his friends, i just thought it made him look weak.we all know what a rebel harry is, almost to a fault, which makes him so loveable.

Avatar Image says:

yeah, exactly. lucius said either the prophecy or his friends die. harry would never let his friends die just because he got them into this mess.

Avatar Image says:

thats what made it justifiable and it allowed them to break the prophecy while increasing the audience’s love for sirius

Avatar Image says:

Pity such a mess was made of Grawp’s character. Gosh, he will be really terrifying in the Battle of Hogwarts, I don’t think.

Avatar Image says:

hermy65 if you read the book again and the part where Neville is being crucio’d by Bellatrix, Harry DOES hold out the prophecy for Lucius to take- he couldn’t let Neville be crucio’d to death just for the prophecy. But in the book they are diverted by the Order so Lucius never gets round to taking it. Also, at the start of that scene Harry says to Lucius ‘Let the others go and you can have the prophecy’. So they do get Harry’s intention right in the film.

Of the special effects I really loved the shelves of propechies falling and the V and DD fight. I’m going back to see it on Imax 3D on Saturday.

Avatar Image says:

LOL Graymayne, I agree!

Avatar Image says:

i really love the speciL effects in Order of the Pheonix and the other movies so i can’t wait for this

Avatar Image says:

There was good special effects they looked soooooo real and amazing

Avatar Image says:

The special effects were amazing!!! I thought the film was great and the effects were brilliant!!!

Avatar Image says:

The movie is great, and it is my favorite of the HP movies. It definitely captured the heart and soul of the book. The acting was great from everyone this time (even though Emma was a bit shaky, and Katie wasn’t fantastic, but they still did fine). I wasn’t upset at all about Sirius being hit by AK. btw, the look that was captured in his eyes was a PERFECT representation of the book scene. The look in his eyes in the film when he died was exactly how I imagined it in the book.

btw, grapes, I loved the shaky camera, too. It really added tension to the scene when Harry was going after Bellatrix, and also when Harry and Dudley were running. Whenever I become a director, I’ll probably use the shaky-technique often, but I wouldn’t overdo it (not saying Yates did, but some filmmakers who use it do over-use it). I mean, if the shaky effect is used a LOT in a film, then it wouldn’t be so exciting and tense to see.

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