Rushes were delighted to be asked to reprise their role as VFX studio for Red Planet's second series of Death in Paradise, starring Ben Miller as Detective Inspector Richard Poole, who is sent to the tiny Caribbean island of Saint-Marie. The series will transmit on Tuesday 8 January at 9pm on BBC One.
Like all actors, Harry the CGI lizard was given a virtual screen test to see how Rushes could improve his photorealism. VFX supervisor Hayden Jones decided the lizard would be a perfect project to utilise Rushes' new physically plausible technology. He comments "We had been developing our new CGI pipeline to closely replicate how light works and materials react in the real world. We knew that this would give Harry the lizard an extra level of realism in every shot."
To start, Harry the lizards textures were spruced up giving him over twice his original resolution. This was then fed into our new shaders, written to take full advantage of Pixar's Photorealistic Renderman. The production team had photographed chrome sphere reference for each lighting setup, which allowed Rushes to quickly and accurately set up the CG lighting. Hayden said, "The CG team at Rushes were really pleased with the results of the lizard renders. The quality of the lighting and shadows coupled with added realism of the lizard's skin gave a fantastic level of authenticity to the shots."