Two independently produced, but critically acclaimed feature films turn to Engine Room for their extensive packages of “invisible effects”. Clothing Designer Tom Ford and Commercial Director Floria Sigismondi were both first time feature film directors, but you wouldn’t know it. Colin Firth was granted an Oscar nomination for his leading roll in “A Single Man”, and who knows what’s in store for “The Runaways” Kristen Stewart and Dakota Fanning.
Both films were perfectly suited for Engine Room’s boutique style of collaboration as both directors have a meticulous artistic eye for detail. There were other similarities as well; each was a period project that required VFX assistance to set their backdrop.
Working with Tom Ford on “A Single Man” (The Weinstein Company) was a memorable experience for all the artists at Engine Room. His perfectionist vision and creative will both challenged and energized the studio. Engine Room made good on the 120 VFX shots contributed to his film, but not without many entertaining stories along the way. Besides delivering the extensive effects package, the studio’s live action wing also produced several critical insert shoots in support of the film, further demonstrating how ER brings much more to film projects than just CG support.
On “The Runaways” (River Road/Apparition), the story of Joan Jet and her legendary teenage rock band of the ‘70’s, Engine Room delivered close to 80 VFX shots, which included many period recreation shots. These scenes took place at the base of the then dilapidated, Hollywood Sign, which was restored to its current state after the movie takes place. ER’s in-house matte artist Dave Piedra brought an artistic vision to these shots that Sigismondi and the film’s renowned editor Peter Chew were thrilled by.
For both Ford and Sigismondi, their films were absolute labors of love and as independent filmmakers from Nick Cassavetes to John Sayles have discovered, Engine Room matches their passion in its work. The result is a perfect visual effects playground on which to realize the forward reaching vision of today’s independent filmmakers.