Perhaps I should hire a cute young woman to do my updates for me.

18 Feb

“Quick! I must update before I become too busy to do so again!”

Since I’ve started working at Invision Productions I am suddenly rather busy, despite the job being “one day a week.” In actuality it’s been (and will continue to be) more than that because there are shoots, which means there are trainings, set-up times, rehearsals, and then shoots. This is going to continue at least through all of March where we have a shoot seemingly once a week (it adds up fast at $10 an hour). This means that I’ll be busier than I have been since I was finishing up The JC Story. Which means I’m getting paid for more of my time, and I’m using my time to do things I love. Ordinarily, that would be the most exciting part of an update. But in this case, it isn’t… Know what that means?
That’s right.
I have seen it.
And I have met him.

“It,” my friends, is the Black Pearl. I have been to Kerner Opticals, Inc, formerly the model department of ILM, where they are currently filming shots for Pirates of the Caribbean 3: At World’s End. The model I saw for the Black Pearl is about 12 feet long, and missing the top half of its masts (they are being shot seperately in another room, to be composited together later). This particular model has been in all three Pirates movies, although there are actually many versions of the Black Pearl. When I saw it it was skewered with a giant steel rod attached to a computer controlled gear box which holds it at precise angles inside a green tank. I have no idea what the plot for the movie is.

I also saw one of the clipper ships from Port Royal (a gorgeous model) about 6 feet long but with all the same rigging as a full-size ship (and it all worked the same way too). It was perched up on a pile of tires in front of a huge blue screen. When the tires get poked with a stick, the ship rocks from side to side as if it were on the ocean, which I’m sure it will appear to be in the final composite.

“He,” is Lorne Peterson. Perhaps you’re not familiar with the name, but I guarantee you’ve seen his work. He is one of the original model makers for ILM, before there even was an ILM. He built prototype models for effect test shots for the original Star Wars movie. He’s been at ILM (now Kerner Opticals) ever since. And I met him. And we talked about clipper ships, and how they would have been crewed and operated and how the british one (on the tires) would actually kick the crap out of The Empress (a model ship I didn’t tell you about). He’s this great old guy with a white beard who is clearly in love with what he does. In addition to building models for every single one of the Star Wars movies he has also built models for War of the Worlds, Peter Pan, Men in Black, Jurassic Park, ET, Hook, Willow, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, and, obviously, Pirates of the Caribbean.

How cool is that?


2 Responses to “Perhaps I should hire a cute young woman to do my updates for me.”

  1. s0starryeyed February 20, 2007 at 11:35 pm #

    that is pretty damn cool. i’m so happy you’re having fun with your new gig! hrm. knowing that the ship is a “camera trick” kinda makes it less awesome. i love you! by hte way, Kristie from Evergreen told me to tell you that she says hi!

    • Anonymous February 21, 2007 at 4:59 am #

      Hi Kristie!!
      Well, the ship is a camera trick in that particular shot. Sometimes it’s an actual ship, sometimes it’s a set built on a barge, and sometimes it’s computer generated. But yes, I suppose it does take away some magic to know that.
      I love you too.

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