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Beautiful Creatures is a romantic fantasy film based upon the novel of the same name. When newcomer Lena Duchannes arrives in the small town of Gatlin, she quickly captures the attention of Ethan Wate, who only wants to escape what he views as a boring and dead-end town. He quickly gets more than he bargained for, as Lena possesses strange powers that have long kept her at a distance from others in her life. Method was called upon to help visualize a host of supernatural sequences and Olivier Dumont stepped in as VFX Supervisor.


In this sequence the artists made the main entrance room appear as if it was placed in the middle of an endless tree filled forest. The work consisted of rotoscoping the actors and furniture and replacing the walls behind them with digital matte paintings for the distant woodland. CG trees were created and rendered for the close and mid ground shots and any walls that were not replaced with the forest effect were color corrected to give a rich red autumnal hue.

A Disorderly Dinner

In this particularly VFX-heavy sequence, two of the Casters (witches) have a family argument during which they create a magical vortex that spins the dining room table and the various utensils and plates around the room. The table and the room were built on a giant gimbal which allowed production to shoot plates of the table and actresses spinning independently of each other. Because the two girls and the floor were meant to be spinning in the opposite direction of the table, the entire floor had to be replaced digitally. Method created the swirling vortex and also CG dinnerware debris which orbited around the table with the girls. Lastly, when one of the witches is blown out the open door, the team created a CG glass door with dinnerware debris smashing up against it and also replaced the stunt actress’ performance with a fully CG double.

Sarafine’s Entrance

In this scene, Sarafine possesses Mrs. Lincoln and tries to enter Ethan's house. However, her entry to the house is blocked by a force-field spell cast by Lena to protect Ethan from harm. As Mrs. Lincoln pushes up against the force-field she reveals the shape of the field and her true form is displayed through the generation of black tendrils which eventually make a hole in the force-field. A combination of CG and composited 2D effects were used to bring the director’s vision of this scenario to life.

A Stormy Reunion

This sequence takes place during the final reunion between Lena and her mother Sarafine as she tries to lure her daughter to the dark side of magic, but Lena, upset after the death of her uncle, summons a category six magical storm.

For the storm, Method artists created complex FX for the super cell and tornados. Most of the trees, a monument, fences and tents were all replaced using CG elements in order to properly show the violence of the wind. The team also created small CG characters that were sucked in or hit by lightning and also added explosions when lightning bolts hit the ground. The goal was to convey the progression of the storm as it becomes more and more violent and takes over the field.

Dumont summarizes, “This was a complex sequence as it required heavy volumetric systems to make it look realistic. We had to represent a super cell that was approximately 1 mile wide and was also generating three smaller tornados in its center during the most violent part of the sequence. Our biggest challenge was the tight schedule. We had only five weeks which also included the look development and the FX R&D phase.  But we loved it!”


  • Environments
  • FX
  • Compositing
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