Redefine discusses the role of VFX in ‘Bhoot Part One: The Haunted Ship’

Bhoot Part One: The Haunted Ship, a horror movie brought out substantial amount of scares at the theatres. The story about a young shipping officer Prithvi (Vicky Kaushal) dealing with personal loss, who takes it upon himself to unravel the mysteries of a haunted ship, involved a whole lot of paranormal that couldn’t have been told effectively without the use of VFX technology. VFX feats have indeed expanded the canvas of cinema and filmmaking has opened up the doors of myriad cinematic possibilities; be it mythological genre or horror. We spoke to ReDefine (VFX and Animation Studio) that was tasked with the VFX work of the movie to know more about the process of notching up spooks.
Horror genre in India is precarious territory. Bringing out the scares is no mean feat. VFX-wise, tell us about the brief as well as your approach to paint horror imagery on the shots How many VFX shots were deployed? To perform well within the horror genre, you need to get the animation timing and the sound absolutely right.  We were tasked with a level of creature effects that has never been done before for Bollywood. The effects had to achieve a look that is natural and unnatural at the same time. The creatures had to be able to walk on walls and go upside down. Their bodies had to bend and dislocate when going down while clicking back into place when coming back up. Dimensional rigging was an enjoyable challenge to be able to achieve these required effects. We had to create digital doubles also. The team in Montreal supported greatly with the creation of the rigged characters, modelling and texturing. Another essential part of the brief was to shoot a ship without having an actual ship. To achieve this, we used simulations, lighting, backdrops and notably a helium balloon which helped us to indicate what direction the actors had to look in. Half of the film had to be shot against a green screen. How many shots were delivered? We deployed 1605 VFX shots. Which software did you make use of?  Nuke, Maya, Photoshop and Clarisse. Tell us about the CG locations and extension used in post-production? Has the technological advancements increased the canvas of filmmaking enabling genres like orror to be more potent? How many people worked on the project from your studio? The CG location was a set which helped us to create the impression of a ship on a beach controlled within an environment. We used internal and external shots of the ship. We used 2.5D extensions which allowed us to create a mix of 3D and 2D effects. This helped us to achieve project textures on set while getting a depth that you don’t normally get. How many people worked on the project? The number of people who worked on the project was 256.