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The *Original* King Kong Model is Animated One Last Time
October 22, 2005 8:52 PM   Subscribe

The *Original* King Kong Model is Animated One Last Time (large Quicktime video).
posted by JPowers (16 comments total)

 
Excellent.

And my, hasn't Peter Jackson lost weight?

(So has Kong, mind...)
posted by armoured-ant at 9:04 PM on October 22, 2005


It's funny how much better the animation is than it was in the original movie, even though the animators are using the same tools and presumably had less time because they were just doing it for fun. I guess people really just sucked at everything back then.
posted by zixyer at 10:07 PM on October 22, 2005


Yeah, unlike now, a time where we're good at everything.
posted by wumpus at 10:21 PM on October 22, 2005


Now's so much more awesome than back then.
posted by jonson at 10:30 PM on October 22, 2005


Go now! Boo then!
posted by JPowers at 11:07 PM on October 22, 2005


zixyer, I think part of the difference was that they could do it with much less effort -- digital video and all -- and the animators at WETA have much greater knowledge of anatomy and animal movement. Plus, more frames per second helps enormously.

While they were manipulating the model on Jackson's coffee table, I kept half expecting an ominous snap! followed by expletives. I know it's steel and looks to be in fabulously maintained condition, lubrication and all, but still, it's an historic artifact!
posted by dhartung at 11:41 PM on October 22, 2005


Yeah, having personally done a little stop motion animation both with and without immediate video feedback, I can definitely say that it makes things a heck of a lot easier. The WETA people have it of course, but the folks in 1933 didn't.
posted by Potsy at 11:56 PM on October 22, 2005


Dang it! I was thinking about posting this. Cool as hell, ain't it?
posted by brundlefly at 12:48 AM on October 23, 2005


Argh! Peter Jackson! How dare you get me excited to see a Jack Black filk! Argh!
posted by Joey Michaels at 1:42 AM on October 23, 2005


I usually watch these on Mondays, but that was cool and completely unexpected. And zixyer, while I should ignore the troll, I ask you to imagine the state of WETA's computers in 70 years.
posted by Busithoth at 5:27 AM on October 23, 2005


Potsy : "Yeah, having personally done a little stop motion animation both with and without immediate video feedback, I can definitely say that it makes things a heck of a lot easier."

Having no experience with stop motion, I thank you for the insight. Would it be correct if I ventured to guess that back then, more time was spent on each frame because they had to make sure that everything was exactly right, while now they can just move the figure a bit without paying as much care, check the result, move whatever was wrong, check again, and repeat until correct? And that doing it in that faster, but more error-prone, way results in more bad takes but far less time before getting the good take? Or is that guess off-base?
posted by Bugbread at 5:41 AM on October 23, 2005


bugbread, it's more that they can compare the current frame with the previous frames and make sure that they have made precisely the movements they intended, that the lighting hasn't changed, etc.. Without this feedback they didn't know until they got it all developed. Then they might discover, for instance, that they moved a limb too far for smooth motion and they'd need to decide whether to reshoot the entire scene, cut or edit it, or just use the flawed footage.
posted by Songdog at 6:26 AM on October 23, 2005


... because this stuff is so time-consuming, even now, that you really only plan on one take.
posted by Songdog at 6:29 AM on October 23, 2005


Very cool short. Too bad the movie will suck.
posted by briank at 7:09 AM on October 23, 2005


That is a beautiful piece of mechanics. The hands, the spine, the fanged skull.
What I'd give to find that in a stocking.
posted by NinjaPirate at 11:33 AM on October 23, 2005


I wish someone would sell a replica armature. For now, we'll have to settle for the animatronic chimpanzee heads that are making the rounds.
posted by mecran01 at 1:40 PM on October 23, 2005


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