Steven Spielberg says The BFG is the most ambitious mo-cap character ever


by Phil de Semlyen |
Published on

We’ve seen the trailer for Steven Spielberg’s latest slice of magical fantasia, The BFG, and marvelled a little at its helter-skelter plunge into Roald Dahl's whizzpopping world of outsized ogres and much tinier orphans. In the new issue of Empire, the director talks exclusively about the unique technical challenges of a movie that reunites him with his new muse, Mark Rylance.

“It’s a big job,” confesses Spielberg. “There are thousands of effects shots. I think it’s the most ambitious motion capture of a character that any film has ever done.” Yes, including Avatar, the Planet Of The Apes movies and Ray Winstone in Beowulf.

It’s a significant advance even from his performance-capture work on The Adventures Of Tintin, adds producer Frank Marshall. “It’s two cameras that put BFG and Sophie together in the same shot. It was a big leap forward in putting CG characters in the real world.”

Sophie, played by newcomer Ruby Barnhill, is the young tyke snatched by Rylance’s BFG and taken to Giant Country. There she discovers a whole new world of friendship with her enormous new pal, some wondrous vistas and the appropriate amount of danger. Especially since the giant she knows is considered a runt by his fellows – including Bloodbottler (Bill Hader) and Fleshlumpeater (Jemaine Clement) – who are always on the lookout for tasty "human beans" to eat.

The BFG, meanwhile, prefers to dine on snozzcumbers, and spends his nights sending good dreams into kids' brains. Check out the trailer below.

With a script by Spielberg's late E.T. collaborator Melissa Mathison, The BFG will be in UK cinemas on July 22. If you want more from the director himself, pick up the new issue of Empire on Thursday. And if you don't feel like a trip all the way to Newsagent Country, simples: just subscribe here.

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