After the epic ‘World War 2 From Space’ that won Simon Clarke and Graham Stott an Emmy with Director Simon George, we had the opportunity with October Films to turn the clock back over 1500 years to create over 400 shots for History Channels’ "Barbarians Rising" a historical 8-part drama doc that tells the story of the rise and fall of the Roman Empire from the perspective of the Barbarian rebel leaders.

Filmed over 12 weeks in Bulgaria, the VFX team supervised many blood thirsty battle scenes, shooting plates and elements to provide the backdrop for digital armies of Romans and Barbarians using Goalem crowd replication software.

3D assets were created to exactly match the live action extras. Every attention to detail was made with the digital extras to ensure that they could be placed next to the live action extras even in mid shots, this included cloth simulation for free flowing garments when fighting running and walking. 
Invisible effects included the piercing of skin with arrows and swords, beheading, additional blood and scars for example.

The series also required the design and execution of a number of analytical graphics that provided the global, strategic and historical context for the drama.  For this we designed a stylised earth and infrared style camera to help explain the strategic movement of Romans and rebel hoards across the globe.

See our ‘making of’ for a behind the scenes look at our work.



Broadcaster: History Channel

Production Company: October Films

Executive Producer: Adam Bullmore, Jos Cushing

Executive Director: Simon George

Series Producers: Michael Waterhouse, Chloe Leyland

Drama Directors: Declan O’Dwyer, Maurice Sweeney

Edit Director: Jim Greayer

VFX Creative Director: Simon Clarke

VFX Supervisor: Graham Stott

VFX Producer: Clare Tinsley, Scott Metcalfe

3D Supervisor: Jem Grimshaw