We were asked to create a compelling website case study for our client Cospective, focusing on its review and approval tool cineSync and how it was used on 2018's Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle. We sat down with Jerome Chen, VFX Supervisor for Sony Imageworks and the Overall VFX Supervisor on Jumanji, to tour through the production processes that powered this epic standalone sequel.
Our goal was to find out how cineSync's incredible, synchronised visual communication toolset enabled creatives and key stakeholders around the globe to iterate on the visual effects that make Jumanji such a delight to watch.
How cineSync combined with Shotgun to become the "backbone of the production pipeline"
Comprised of over 1,100 VFX shots, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is a sprawling adventure through a wilderness of CG environments, deadly creatures, and impressive digital doubles – and all of it was reviewed through cineSync’s deep integration with production tracking platform Shotgun. We sat down with Jerome Chen, VFX Supervisor for Sony Imageworks and the Overall VFX Supervisor on Jumanji, to tour through the production processes that powered this epic standalone sequel.
When the original Jumanji charged to cinematic success – grossing over $260m in 1995 – visual effects remained in their infancy. But a great deal has changed between then and now.
Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle doesn’t bring the game’s wild environments to the player, but instead plunges the player into an all-new lush, organic world. Kevin Hart, Jack Black, Karen Gillan and, of course, The Rock himself, awaken below the canopy of Jumanji’s primeval verdure. It’s a sight to behold. Sony Imageworks’ VFX bring life to a bestiary of oversized creatures and gorgeous but perilous environments. This is as close to Jumanji as the viewer can get.
"cineSync really helped to make Jumanji the visual safari that it is."
Jerome Chen has said in previous interviews that he relies on the combination of Shotgun and cineSync as “the backbone of my production pipeline”. So how did that work on Jumanji?
“I was on the project from pre-production, through practical photography on location and until the very last day of post-production,” begins Chen.
“Shotgun was the first thing I requested to be installed as the foundation for our production infrastructure, and cineSync almost immediately after. It was used to ingest reviews, from our earliest previs to our very last approved hi-res shot, and it really helped to make Jumanji the visual safari that it is."
First and foremost, facilities were cast with an eye towards their specialities and quality of past work. Given their previous efforts on The Legend of Tarzan, Rodeo FX was brought on board to create many of Jumanji’s larger-than-life beasts; including hippos, crocodiles, tarantulas, scorpions and centipedes.
MPC was also added to the team, having ably demonstrated its environment ability in The Jungle Book, along with its knack for photorealistic CG animals. In the case of Jumanji, the studio applied this skill set to an elephant and several jaguars.
For Chen, cineSync was like a machete, helping him to cut through the tangle of reviews on a daily basis and clear a path through the production’s undergrowth.
“When working with artists across multiple time zones, and working to set production cycles, cineSync and Shotgun were instrumental in helping me to monitor all of the moving parts and accomplish such a large scale production.”