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Any Hannibal watchers? Need assistance identifying effects

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Adam Harper
Any Hannibal watchers? Need assistance identifying effects
on Jul 3, 2014 at 9:39:53 am

Hello all

Fairly inexperienced post-production person here. I'm normally an editor but on a project I'm currently working on the director has asked me whether it would be possible to incorporate some effects from the Hannibal TV series into the film. The project has yet to be filmed but I need to know if something needs to be done on set before I attempt to try and get these effects done. If you're willing to provide some rough guidelines on how to achieve these effects as well that would be greatly appreciated!
The first effect occurs in Season 1 Episode 13, from about 1:30 - 3:00. It's the strange camera effect.
The second effect occurs in Season 2 Episode 1, at the very start when we see Crawford and Hannibal's reflections in the knife
The third effect is in the same episode, happens at around 25:30 when Graham is revealed from black

Thanks a bunch


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Walter Soyka
Re: Any Hannibal watchers? Need assistance identifying effects
on Jul 3, 2014 at 2:04:01 pm

What a fantastic show!

I watch it, but I don't have that kind of numeric recall of the effects. Any chance you can describe them in a bit more depth or point to a representative image to jog my memory?

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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Adam Harper
Re: Any Hannibal watchers? Need assistance identifying effects
on Jul 19, 2014 at 10:22:44 am

Wow sorry for the incredibly late reply, didn't get any notification of your response!

So the first point occurs when Will wakes up muddy and disorientated then throws up an ear. The scene has two different effects working simultaneously.
1. There is a slight camera shake effect with some motion blur
2. The camera on occasion seems to fixate on one particular point on the screen and as the action on screen moves the screen moves with it? If that doesn't make sense tell me and I'll try explain exactly what happens on screen.

The second point occurs just before Jack and Hannibal have their fight at the start of season 2. Hannibal is cutting some meat and we see Jack and Hannibal's reflection in the knife. I know it is possible to get a reflection practically but the reflections in the show suggest that the knife is made from a mirror.

The second point is after Will gets sort of hypnotised. He is revealed from black, but it looks as though there were some shutters blocking the light that were on him and were then opened. It could have been done practically but just want to check to see if theres a way to do it post-production wise.

Thanks, much appreciated!


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Walter Soyka
Re: Any Hannibal watchers? Need assistance identifying effects
on Jul 22, 2014 at 11:44:17 am

I can't tell you with any certainty how the Hannibal crew did these effects, but I can tell you how I'd approach them.

[Adam Harper] "1. There is a slight camera shake effect with some motion blur 2. The camera on occasion seems to fixate on one particular point on the screen and as the action on screen moves the screen moves with it? If that doesn't make sense tell me and I'll try explain exactly what happens on screen."

I don't remember this specific shot, but I can visualize what you're describing.

Here, I'd have the camera op follow the action as closely as possible, and I'd track and stabilize the shot for the desired fixation point. I'd scale the stabilization up and down and add motion blur in post.


[Adam Harper] "The second point occurs just before Jack and Hannibal have their fight at the start of season 2. Hannibal is cutting some meat and we see Jack and Hannibal's reflection in the knife. I know it is possible to get a reflection practically but the reflections in the show suggest that the knife is made from a mirror."

I wouldn't be surprised if this were mostly practical.

It could be done as a composite if the plane of the knife were tracked and if the "reflection" were shot. Then the "reflection" can be projected and the knife can pick it up, or the pivot of the reflection camera can be matched to the pivot of the knife, plus a perspective adjustment from the track.


[Adam Harper] "The second point is after Will gets sort of hypnotised. He is revealed from black, but it looks as though there were some shutters blocking the light that were on him and were then opened. It could have been done practically but just want to check to see if theres a way to do it post-production wise."

Again, I'm sorry I can't remember this shot, but I can visualize from your description.

Shots like this are easy to do in camera and significantly harder to fake in post-production. In camera, you get correct lighting and shadows for free. In post, you need to model the face of the talent and model the lights in 3D to get accurate-looking highlights and shadows for compositing.

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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Adam Harper
Re: Any Hannibal watchers? Need assistance identifying effects
on Jul 24, 2014 at 10:26:03 am

Thanks for the response

Here, I'd have the camera op follow the action as closely as possible, and I'd track and stabilize the shot for the desired fixation point. I'd scale the stabilization up and down and add motion blur in post.

Seems simple enough. Any ideas on the camera shake? I have tried using the Wiggler effect before but it was too jarring and extreme, I'm looking at a more vibration to create a feeling of disorientation.


As for the next two I guess its worth trying to get them done practically. I might be able to pull of the knife reflection with my limited knowledge but judging by what you said for the shadow part it seems a bit beyond my abilities, and timeframe.

Thanks for the help!


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