You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Ang Lee talks vfx at ‘Pi’ event

Effects biz is 'very hard to make money'

Ang Lee stuck to his awards season line about vfx, praising the artists but condemning the costs, at a “Life of Pi” Blu-ray press event in New York Monday.

Lee, who incurred the ire of vfx artists by not mentioning the Oscar-winning visual effects on his pic during his acceptance speech for director, had an opportunity to expand on his opinions of the biz but didn’t bite. He didn’t have a lot to say about the travails of the visual effects industry even when prodded, other than pointing out the constant pressure for novelty that’s build into vfx.

“This is a business where it’s very hard to make money,” he said. “Their research and development fees are so high, because when you use visual effects in a movie, you always want to see something you’ve never seen before.”

Film editor Tim Squyres chimed in, “If they can’t make money off this, then there’s something fundamentally wrong with the business plan between the studios and the visual effects company.”

Lee, Squyres and scribe David Magee all acknowledged the integral part played by the film’s vfx team. “I think they’re artists,” Lee said and added that vfx studios are often eager to work with him. “Normally they do big explosions, but I want to do visual art with them.”

The director did note that the cost of vfx can be an obstacle to production. “For a movie like this (“Life of Pi”) it’s very common for visual effects to take up half the budget. Some of those segments are so expensive. Millions of dollars have to be spent before the studio can see it. How do they approve that budget?”

The homevideo extras on the “Life of Pi” Blu-ray show the intricacies of the film’s 3D and CGI work, including one extended edit of the shipwreck scene that illustrates the various layers of vfx work involved in the sequence.

More Film

  • 'Coco' Edges 'Justice League' at Thanksgiving

    'Coco' Edges 'Justice League' at Thanksgiving Day Box Office

    Ang Lee stuck to his awards season line about vfx, praising the artists but condemning the costs, at a “Life of Pi” Blu-ray press event in New York Monday. Lee, who incurred the ire of vfx artists by not mentioning the Oscar-winning visual effects on his pic during his acceptance speech for director, had an […]

  • Mar del Plata: Argentina on the

    Mar del Plata: Argentina on the Rise - Gustavo Biazzi

    Ang Lee stuck to his awards season line about vfx, praising the artists but condemning the costs, at a “Life of Pi” Blu-ray press event in New York Monday. Lee, who incurred the ire of vfx artists by not mentioning the Oscar-winning visual effects on his pic during his acceptance speech for director, had an […]

  • Aladdin

    'Aladdin' Turns 25: Creators on the Real Beginning of the Disney Renaissance

    Ang Lee stuck to his awards season line about vfx, praising the artists but condemning the costs, at a “Life of Pi” Blu-ray press event in New York Monday. Lee, who incurred the ire of vfx artists by not mentioning the Oscar-winning visual effects on his pic during his acceptance speech for director, had an […]

  • Dieter KosslickPress Conference - 67th Berlin

    Directors Call for Overhaul of Berlin Film Festival After Dieter Kosslick Departs

    Ang Lee stuck to his awards season line about vfx, praising the artists but condemning the costs, at a “Life of Pi” Blu-ray press event in New York Monday. Lee, who incurred the ire of vfx artists by not mentioning the Oscar-winning visual effects on his pic during his acceptance speech for director, had an […]

  • SGIFF: Cinema Legend Waheeda Rehman Lauds

    SGIFF: Movie Legend Waheeda Rehman Lauds Contemporary Indian Cinema

    Ang Lee stuck to his awards season line about vfx, praising the artists but condemning the costs, at a “Life of Pi” Blu-ray press event in New York Monday. Lee, who incurred the ire of vfx artists by not mentioning the Oscar-winning visual effects on his pic during his acceptance speech for director, had an […]

  • ITV Studios Global Ent. To Handle

    ITV Studios Global Ent. To Handle Movistar+ Original 'Felix'

    Ang Lee stuck to his awards season line about vfx, praising the artists but condemning the costs, at a “Life of Pi” Blu-ray press event in New York Monday. Lee, who incurred the ire of vfx artists by not mentioning the Oscar-winning visual effects on his pic during his acceptance speech for director, had an […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content