As far as training sequences go the Zero G battle chamber of Enderâ€™s Game is one of the most visually sweeping and operatic locations in recent sci-fi. Was it done with wires? A large set? CGI? All of the above, as co-production designer Ben Proctor explains to Video&Filmmaker. By Drew Turney
As gruff commander Colonel Graff (Harrison Ford) tells his young recruits, through the round gate off the austere staging area is a zero-gravity environment. The cavernous room contains obstacles or â€˜starsâ€™, enemies from the opposite team and – as the name suggests – no gravity, leaving recruits to float and propel themselves.
â€œThe film used the set pieces we created very much as planned,â€ co-production designer Ben Proctor says. â€œThe battle room is conceived as a 100m-wide sphere but we built smaller parts that could be digitally extended and connected. The gate itself, the staging area, the sort of dish that extends outside the gate – itâ€™s all there for when Ender starts to play in Zero G and heâ€™s hanging on to those handles for dear life. A big part of the frame in those shots – and certainly everything he was interacting with – was a camera-ready piece of scenery.â€
Procter explains several â€˜starsâ€™ were built to simulate the pyramid-shaped obstacles scattered throughout the room, some for the actors to interact with which would be replaced digitally, and as photorealistic props that would appear in the film.
Click here to read the rest of this story.