In late 2020, the great guys at Alice Filmes reached out to us to develop the main villain of this FIAT movie: the chasing hole.
This one needed to be realistic and not cartoonish, even if the spot has a comedy mud.
Finding the right balance was one of the challenges on this project.
In the first phase, we did some testing with an old recording from the film FIAT, since we did not yet have the released recordings.
Our main problem at this stage was that we had too much motion blur - the client wanted to see more of our vilain.
First holefx test.
Then we started testing our tool in one of the released shots. Several iterations were done to find the right timing and look for our character.
Flipbook (playblast) and some test renders (done in Karma)
As we started working on more shots, more challenges awaited us!
As we can see below, there is some strange animation behaviour. After a lot of troubleshooting, we found out that the cause was the retime applied to the shot - the given shot was already retimed. Going back to the original footage would have required further 3D tracking, and the deadline was in sight, so we went back to Houdini and found a way to fix the problem on the 3D side.
Some of the iteraitions of the animation and look-dev.
The sequence of the hole climbing up the wall was another challenge - the client wanted to be "real" and not cartoonish.
We had to upgrade our tool to achieve that, and ended up adding some 3D "layers" of objects inside the building to add fine detail to the shot.
Some iterations of the hole climbing the wall.
At some point, we had to tackle the most difficult scene of the project: the close-up of the hole. 
Story-wise, this shot would introduce our villain, so it had to convey his aggressiveness, and of course it had to feel real.
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