“Harmonix Rock Band II” by Passion Pictures

  • ©Pete Candeland


SIGGRAPH Video Review:




    Harmonix Rock Band II


Company / Institution / Agency:

  • Passion Pictures


    The hero band from the Rock Band I trailer reprises its role in this 90-second trailer and engages in a car-rooftop stand off with a new rival group in a high-energy battle of the bands.

    The band characters designed by director Pete Candeland are stylized but quite realistic 3D people who need to move naturalistically, and with a lot of detail in their clothes, hair, etc. The cars and other props, and the American desert backgrounds, also needed to match the same level of detail and authenticity as the detailing in the characters. Added to this, there were two bands instead of the one in the original film, eight characters in total, which immediately increased the amount of work that was involved. All these factors meant that a sizable specialist crew had to be assembled for the project.

    The team decided to use motion capture to assist the animation process of the band characters, and we worked with Audio Motion Studios to produce the footage for animators to work to. The director cast four actors, who played the characters in both bands. Takes of the DV footage were selected, and BVH files were made and imported into XSi for animation. Lip synch was also very important for the film, so we worked with Image Metrics, which filmed the facial mocap shots.

    The characters were modeled using Modo and animated in XSi. In total, we had a crew of around 50, including modelers, riggers, animators, VFX artists, compositors, render wranglers, and matte painters. The animation was rendered using mental ray and composited using After Effects.


    Modo, XSI, Motor, After Effects, Final Cut Pro

Additional Contributors:

    Director: Pete Candeland

    Production Company: Passion Pictures

    Producer: Anna Lord

    Executive Producer: Hugo Sands

    Storyboard & Design: Pete Candeland, Alberto Mielgo

    Writers: Pete Candeland, Lee Gingold, Giles Dill

    Head of CG: Jason Nicholas

    CG Animators: Vincent Aupetit, Michael Cawood, Wes Coman, Gui Glachant, Lina Kousnetsova, Donny Mahmood, David Sigrist, Chris Welsby

    Lead Character Modeler: Mario Ucci

    Character Modeler: Cesar Eiji Nunes

    Rigging: Chris Dawson

    Prop Modelers: Ian Brown, Simon Reeves, Raymond Slattery

    Senior 3D Artists: Nuno Conceicao, Harry Bardak

    3D Artists: Tommy Andersson, Claire Michaud, Quentin Vien, Simon Reeves

    VFX Artists: Alex Doss, Jamie Franks, Sajjad Amjad, Haavard Ness, Giles Dill

    Render Wrangler: Michael Sofoluke

    Lead Compositor: Niamh Lines

    Compositing: David Lea, Luke Carpenter, John Taylor, Lee Gingold, Kristian Hammerstad, John Williams

    TDs: Julian Hodgson, Alan Jones

    Matte Painter: Max Dennison

    Facial motion capture: Image Metrics

    Motion capture: Audiomotion Studios Ltd, UK

    VFX Supervisor: Neil Riley

    Actors: Ben Davies, Fathia Tidadini, Scott Vining, Gary Comber

    Editors: Lee Gingold, Daniel Greenway, Jaime Rubio, Tim King, Klaus Heinecke

    Colourist: Mick Vincent on Baselight at The Mill, London

    Music: “Hello There”, Cheap Trick

Animation / Video Overview: