Alkemy X Reunites with M. Night Shyamalan for VFX for Universal Pictures' SPLIT

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Last Updated: January 27, 2017 6:27 pm GMT
(New York, NY--January 27, 2017) Creative content companyAlkemy Xprovided visual effects for Universal Pictures’ No. 1 new film SPLIT, from writer/director M. Night Shyamalan, it was announced today. From on-set VFX supervision to post-production, the job yielded a total of 74 shots in the final film, including those for the film’s climactic scenes. SPLIT is now in theaters.

“Split” marks Alkemy X’s fourth feature-film col aboration with Shyamalan and his Philadelphia-based production company, Blinding Edge Pictures. It most recently served as the director’s exclusive VFX company on 2015’s “The Visit.”

“We’ve built a great relationship with Night ever since we did a bit of VFX work on ‘The Last Airbender’ [2010],” remarked Bob Lowery, Vice President, Business Development at Alkemy X.

“It was an audition of sorts, and he’s chosen us as a partner on al of his films since. He’s a very talented director who knows what he wants creatively and won’t stop until he gets it, which we respect a great deal. A bit of local pride accents our passion for excel ence whenever we collaborate, as Alkemy X and Night both have deep roots in the Philadelphia area — where many of his features are filmed or set.”

Alkemy X augmented the world of “Split” with subtle visual effects throughout, such as character work, TV/computer screen graphics and replacements, muzzle flashes and squib hits for gun fire, and some minimal additional CG work and paint cleanup.

Alkemy X was also tasked with physical y embel ishing the pivotal 24​th​ personality in “Split,”
scrutinizing details such as bone and vein structure, and muscle movements.

“Enhancing James’ incredible performance was definitely the most creative aspect of this project for our team,” said Edwardo Mendez, Alkemy X Senior VFX Supervisor. “It required intensive motion tracking on set -- and several different techniques: 3D object tracking, camera tracking, planar tracking, and Nuke's smart vector tracking. Ultimately, achieving the resulting life-like look was a concerted effort across several VFX departments, including look development, 3D modeling and texture, 2D paint and a lot of ‘comp love’ to ensure our effects seamlessly lived in this world.”

Including its presence on the “Split” live-action set, Alkemy X worked on the film over the course of six months—with several VFX deliveries—as Shyamalan was in post-production on the film.

“A lot of the work upfront was look development and temp, which helped Night visualize how Alkemy X could help bring his bril iantly intriguing script to life,” concluded Mendez. “To see it al culminate in a film that has captivated audiences has been a rewarding experience.”

Visual Effects Company: Alkemy X Senior VFX Supervisor: Edwardo Mendez VFX Executive Producers: Bob Lowery, Leah Orsini VFX Producers: Jennifer Wessner, Wendy Garfinkle VFX Coordinator: Mitch Campbel CG Supervisor: Dave Zeevalk Compositing Supervisors: Gabriel Regentin, Steve Sanchez VFX On-Set Supervisor: Colton Mil er VFX Editor: Lucas Andrei Pipeline/Technical Manager: Tyler Lockard CG Artist: Adam Stockholm Digital Compositors: Anteneh Adamu, Gerard Andal, Kyle Andal, Richard Aponte, Dan Giraldo, Melissa Graff, Dimitre Iliev, Denis Kozyrev, Mark Lieberman, Sharon Marcussen, Anton Moss, Christopher Riemann, Matthew Robertson, Victor Torres, Jason Tsang Paint Artists: Ellen Miki, Alejandro Monzon, Ruben Rodas Roto Artists: Arthur Guttilla, Raquel Fogel, Kambra Mil er, Daniel Rosenberg

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About Alkemy X:
Alkemy X is a creative content company offering live action production, design, high-end VFX, and post-production services. We produce commercials, branded content, network creative, integrated marketing, social/digital initiatives, long-form unscripted television (“Restaurant Impossible”) and visual effects for feature films, episodic TV, and commercials. Advertising and branded content clients include BMW, Pepsi, Panera, Lexus and Comcast. Promo, integrated, and social clients include Nickelodeon, Syfy, AMC, TruTV, and Food Network. The VFX team works with major studios including Warner Bros, ABC, NBC, Cinemax, STARZ, USA (Golden Globe winner “Mr. Robot”), and HBO (“The Leftovers”). Alkemy X clients connect with our multi-discipline creative team, ensuring a 360 approach to any project.​ ​www.alkemy-x.com

About “Split”
Writer/director/producer M. Night Shyamalan returns to the captivating grip of “The Sixth Sense,” “Unbreakable” and “Signs” with “​Split​,” an original film that delves into the mysterious recesses of one man’s fractured, gifted mind. Fol owing 2016’s breakout hit “The Visit,”
Shyamalan reunites with producer Jason Blum (“The Purge” and “Insidious” series, “The Gift”) for the thriller being hailed as “Shyamalan’s most terrifying film to date.” Though Kevin (James McAvoy) has evidenced 23 personalities—each with unique physical attributes—to his trusted psychiatrist, Dr. Fletcher (Betty Buckley), there remains one stil submerged who is set to materialize and dominate al the others. Compel ed to abduct three teenage girls led by the wil ful, observant Casey (Anya Taylor-Joy, “The Witch”), Kevin reaches a war for survival among al of those contained within him—as wel as everyone around him—as the walls between his compartments shatter apart. For the film ​The Guardian cal s “a masterful blend of Hitchcock and horror,” Shyamalan and Blum reassemble their core team from “The Visit,” the No. 1-grossing horror film of 2015. Their fellow collaborators on “Split” include producer Marc Bienstock and executive producers Ashwin Rajan, Steven Schneider and Kevin Frakes.​ ​www.splitmovie.com

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