Digital Domain Productions recently completed visual effects for The Watch, 20th Century Fox‘s comedy starring Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn, Jonah Hill and Richard Ayoade. Directed by Akiva Schaffer, the movie tells the story of four suburban guys who accidentally discover that their town has become overrun by aliens posing as ordinary suburbanites and save the world from extermination.
The movie includes an unusually large number of visual effects shots for a comedy, and Digital Domain’s work focused on those elements that were key to supporting the story, particularly, the creation of hundreds of computer-generated aliens. The look of the aliens was designed by Legacy Effects, which created a number of practical alien suits worn by actors. Digital Domain brought its expertise to the aliens’ movement – achieving digitally what was impossible practically by giving them dynamics and physicality that were animal-like and could not be mistaken as human.
Digital Domain visual effects supervisor Kelly Port oversaw teams in Vancouver, British Columbia, and Venice, California, and the work of visual effects partner Reliance MediaWorks done in India, to deliver 239 shots in 10 months. Performance capture for the aliens was done in Digital Domain’s virtual production studio in Los Angeles.