Cuarón’s Gravity Has a 20-Minute Opening Shot


Framestore, the UK special effects company that won an Oscar for The Golden Compass and has worked most recently on Avatar, Clash of the Titans, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, as well as Alfonso Cuarón’s Children of Men, has revealed new details on Cuarón’s Gravity. The 3D Warner Bros. sci-fi film will star Robert Downey Jr.

Here’s what Framestore says on its official website:

Framestore is about to embark on one of its greatest challenges yet, Gravity is the next Avatar in terms of ambition. There are many innovative and visually stunning aims for this project.

The entire film weill be made here at Framestore. In effect the film, as Avatar was, is 60% CG feature animation with the balance being hybrid CG and live action elements.

Starring Robert Downey Junior, the film is a contemporary survival thriller that follows a woman as she attempts to make her way back to earth after a satellite crash sets off a chain reaction of further crashes. Because it’s set in space, most shots require every element to float in zero-gravity.

But then factor in that this a stylish Cuarón flick, directed with his trademark languid feel, and you begin to realise the full scale of our challenge. Cuarón’s long and fluid style (the opening shot alone is slated to last at least 20 minutes) leaves no cut points to hide behind. In short, this is a hybrid of a fully animated, photo-real feature film with a blockbusting visual effects movie.

Fortunately, having worked with Alfonso before on Harry Potter and Children of Men, we know one another extremely well. Now we are looking for the best talent in the world to help us realise this massive and beautiful film. Over the next few weeks we are interviewing and looking at reels of those in-house who want to join in as well as making trips to the US, Canada and Australasia.

This is CG feature animation meets real world on a large and beautiful scale.