I’m always amazed at how much of the movies and TV shows we see are comprised of visual effects. In fact, you’re hard-pressed to find a film or TV series that doesn’t have any visual effects at all. VFX isn’t just used to create monsters or alien planets, but in fact can be used to “soften” the features on an actor’s face (it’s called “digital makeup” and it’s used on a lot of TV shows), fill in a background to make it period appropriate, or even put two actors in the same scene even when they shot their parts at different times.
In the case of Watchmen, HBO’s phenomenal, critically acclaimed series that wrapped up this Sunday with an epic finale, the VFX are intensive. But even though it’s Watchmen, the extent of the VFX involved may surprise you. A new making of video runs down some of the major visual effects shots of the series, and one surprising revelation is that Tim Blake Nelson’s Looking Glass (aka “Mirror Guy”) never actually wore reflective material on set. That was added in post-production so as not to reflect the camera or any of the behind-the-scenes portions of the set on his face.
In the breakdown video you can also see how much of Ozymandias’ shenanigans were VFX-heavy, and how the whole Europa origin thing came to be with Yahya Abdul-Mateen II’s Doctor Manhattan. It’s an interesting little video that’s also an excuse to listen to Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross’ excellent score again.
Check out the Watchmen making of video below, and if you missed it, check out what showrunner Damon Lindelof told us about figuring out Doctor Manhattan’s powers.