The Third Floor Receives VES Virtual Cinematography Award

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Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Wins Year’s Top Virtual Cinematography Honors, Recognizing Work by The Third Floor and Framestore

Last Updated: February 14, 2018 7:18 pm GMT
(Los Angeles, CA--February 14, 2018) Artists at international visualization studio THE THIRD FLOOR, Inc. have received this year’s Visual Effects Society (VES) Award for Outstanding Virtual Cinematography in a Photoreal Project for Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 – Groot Dance/Opening Fight. The award was presented to nominees James Baker (previs/postvis supervisor) and Steven Lo (previs lead) of THE THIRD FLOOR and nominees Alvise Avati (animator) and Robert Stipp (lighting technical director) of Framestore, representing the companies’ extensive digital cinematography work.


James Baker (L), visualization supervisor from The Third Floor, and Robert Stipp (R), lighting technical director from Framestore, represented the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 teams in a win in the VES Awards Virtual Cinematography category.


While it features the smallest character, the Groot Dance/Opening Fight presented some of the film’s biggest challenges. This included a largely virtual, two-and-a-half-minute “one’r” shot of Baby Groot dancing his way through a battle scene. THE THIRD FLOOR team visualized the sequence, blocking action, camera moves, visual gags and music timing to meet the vision of director James Gunn. THE THIRD FLOOR also worked with departments from visual effects to editing to stunts to create techvis and postvis.

Visual effects and animation were done end to end at Framestore, with artists led by Framestore visual effects supervisor Jonathan Fawkner, working with production visual effects supervisor Christopher Townsend and the filmmakers. The visual effects team approached the Groot Dance sequence by creating a seamless series long visual effects takes, each also featuring multiple digital characters set into custom virtual environments with interactive lighting and simulation effects.

“The sheer fun and creativity of the sequence motivated everyone to bring out their best,” said James Baker, THE THIRD FLOOR. “It’s amazing to be recognized among the year’s outstanding work and thanks go out to Marvel, the filmmakers, our many colleagues, and, of course, the artists within the teams who put much time and love into realizing a technically complex scene with literally so much character!”

“We are so proud of the awardees for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2!” said Chris Edwards, CEO, THE THIRD FLOOR, Inc. “It’s great to see visualization and virtual cinematography continue to be recognized in the industry and a privilege to be able to contribute to projects that elevate the bar through collaborative virtual techniques.”

THE THIRD FLOOR also received VES Award nominations in Outstanding Virtual Cinematography for Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (Be Our Guest), Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi (Crait Surface Battle) and Thor: Ragnarok (Valkyrie’s Flashback). Nominees Shannon Justison and Casey Schatz represented THE THIRD FLOOR’s creative and on-set technical visualization for Beauty and the Beast with the Framestore animation, lighting and visual effects teams represented by CG supervisor Neil Weatherley and lighting technical director Claire Michaud. THE THIRD FLOOR previs supervisor Albert Cheng joined Virtual Cinematography nominees from Industrial Light forStar Wars: The Last Jedi while Casey Schatz, virtual production supervisor at THE THIRD FLOOR, received a nomination alongside nominees from visual effects company Rising Sun Pictures.

THE THIRD FLOOR was recipient of the VES Virtual Cinematography award in 2015 forX-Men: Days of Future Past.

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About THE THIRD FLOOR
THE THIRD FLOOR is a visualization studio dedicated to designing and producing next-generation media for feature films, television, video games, virtual reality and theme park attractions. Working hand in hand with directors, producers and key crew, the company’s artists use specialized skills in storytelling and computer animation to create digital versions of shots and scenes that streamline physical production and post. Since its founding in 2004, THE THIRD FLOOR has contributed to breakthrough projects such asAvatar and Gravity. Recent credits include Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Thor: Ragnarok, Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2, Beauty and the Beast, Wonder Woman andSeasons 4 through 8 of Game of Thrones. THE THIRD FLOOR has won three Emmy Awards, as well as numerous awards from the Visual Effects Society, the Themed Entertainment Society, Hollywood Post Alliance and SIGGRAPH. For further information and credits, visit www.thethirdfloorinc.com.



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