Big Beasts: Last of The Giants

Following the success of our RTS award winning visual effects work on the Amazing Animal Family series for Sky, Moonraker were very excited to be working with our Bristol friends, Offspring Films again on Big Beasts!

With our winning pitch designs, we really wanted to find a way to stylishly emphasise the sheer scale of the beasts and remind the audience that, even though they appear fantastical, they existed and walked the earth! We wanted to design a unique look for the series that bedded in with the editorial direction. To achieve this, we designed and created an antiquarian bible of ancient beasts. This created an atmospheric feel for the shots and provided a canvas to show off the amazing anatomical detail of the beasts, also allowing us to add in human details so that the audience could understand the sheer scale of these ancient animals. The Megladon being able to open its mouth to a 4ft gape!  

We started with beautiful illustrations of the beasts from talented artist Roman Uchytel. We rotoscoped and graded the images to bed them into our bespoke ancient parchment texture and then rigged the images to allow us to create subtle animation to bring the animals to life. An additional layer of lighting and particle effects were added to bring the book further to life.

We set up a pipeline where we initially delivered an oversized artwork at 8k to allow the offline edit as much freedom as possible to create camera moves and cuts as they pleased. We then recreated the locked sequences and added in the animations, lighting and additional particle effects. This kept the UHD render times as efficient as possible.

Working at UHD meant significantly more detail was needed across all shots and on screen the size of the delivery really emphasises the amazing scale of these historic and amazing creatures and brings to life the magic of the series.



Broadcaster: Sky One
Production Company: Offspring Films
Executive Producer: Alex Williamson
Producer/Director: Simon Muriel
Series Producer: Sam Hodgson
Illustrator: Roman Uchytel
VFX Lead Designer: Graham Watts
VFX Executive Producer: Jon Grafton
VFX Producer: Emma Kolasinska