The film, which features Bryan Cranston, Angelina Jolie and Sam Rockwell, tells the story of a gorilla named Ivan (voiced by Rockwell) and his assorted animal friends, all of whom live in the Big Top Shopping Mall with their owner, Mack (Cranston). The NVIZ team, led by Nikki Atkinson, worked with director Thea Sharrock, VFX Supervisor Nick Davis and cinematographer Florian Balhaus across the work, which included 7 previs sequences.
As the storyline suggests, the film features an impressive number of animals in the hero character lineup. With the help of Kasper Larson, NVIZ created 9 different previs creature rigs for animators to work with.
In the Postvis stage, NVIZ then worked with Derek Burgess from VFX editorial on early lookdev tests, integrating the previs characters into plates as soon as they came through on the shoot. It became apparent that as the project had evolved, so too had the look of the characters and the challenge would be to create a cohesive look across the director's cut.
Early postvis edits were a combination of previs shots, VR shots from MPC and postvis shots from NVIZ. Liaising with MPC meant the facilities were able to tackle the discrepancies between the different vendor aesthetics by sharing assets amongst each other. Working closely with VFX editorial and production the team were able to postvis approximately 600 shots for the director's cut over a 6 month period.