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Planet Unknown – Animated film by Shawn Wang

Planet Unknown – Animated film by Shawn Wang

Planet Unknown is a passion project from Chinese student and director Shawn Wang. Animated over eleven months it was the final project for Shawn’s course at the Communication University of China. The film looks and feels like a Hollywood production. The attention to detail is exceptional with jaw dropping renders. Both the pace of the film and the use of shots is impeccable.

 

 

The idea started back in 2014 when Interstellar was released in China. Shawn was deeply impressed by the movie and inspired by the two robots Tars and Case. The idea of intellectual robots exploring space started from there.

Other inspiration includes Pixar movies like Wall-E and Toy Story, as well as Chappie and NASA documentaries about Mars Rover Curiosity. Short films by individuals like Alex Roman’s The Third & The Seventh, Richard Mans’ Abiogenesis, Erik Wernquist’s Wanderers, Alf Lovvold’s Dawn of the Stuff, and so many more.

Shawn started working full time on this project in July 2015, though the storyline wasn’t fixed until November. The process was challenging but it was a perfect learning opportunity as well.

Cinema 4D, plugin TurbulenceFD and Octane for C4D were heavily used for most of the tasks. Houdini was used to fracture things. Then Zbrush for sculpting, Mari for texturing, After Effects for compositing, and Premiere for editing. Python and JavaScript were used for scripting in C4D, Mari and AE, which helped speed up the process a lot.

It took around 4 months to build the 3D assets. Then Shawn moved on to animatic previews. Each individual shot got more clear and problems to solve became more specific. Then the rest of the time were mainly focused on building scenes, keyframe animation, FX simulation, rendering and compositing.

Three months before the hand in date Shawn approached Echoic Audio, one of the UKs leading music and sound design studios, to create the soundtrack for the film. The collaboration was a huge success with Echoic’s epic orchestral score and detailed sound design catapulting the film to the next level.

The project got wrapped on June 1st 2016. And premiered 9 days later at Communications University of China to an audience of more 2,000 from all over the city. Planet Unknown recently won Best Animated Short at the Burbank International Film Festival.

Film Synopsis

At the end of the 21st century mankind were facing global resource depletion. Space Rovers were sent out to find potential inhabitable planets.

Director biography

Shawn Wang is an animation director and 3D artist. Having a passion for CGI and storytelling, Shawn loves creating narrative visuals through all types of media. He completed his debut short animation project Planet Unknown during his last year at Communication University of China. The project was inspired by various space exploration movies and media.

Echoic Audio biography

Echoic Audio is music & sound design studio based from the UK. Echoic creates bespoke audio for a variety of film, TV and advertising projects. They have a strong sense of creativity working on a variety of collaborative passion projects each year.

Credits

Written & Directed by
Shawn Wang

Modelling, Texturing,
Animation,Compositing & Editing
Shawn Wang

Music & Sound Design by
Echoic Audio

Composer
Sam Foster

Sound Design by
Tom Gilbert
David Johnston

Special Thanks to
Evolutions

Re-recording Mixer
Will Norie

Executive Producer
Xinyuan Huang

Faculty Adviser
Yucheng Huang

Special Thanks to System Advisers
Sicong Wang
Jiawei Cao
Horizon Bian

Links

Planet Unknown on vimeo – https://vimeo.com/183577091
Planet Unknown website – http://planetunknownfilm.com
Shawn Wang – http://shawnwangvfx.com
Echoic Audio – http://echoicaudio.com

Planet Unknown, Shawn Wang, chinese students, cg film, animated film, animation, cg, computer graphics, computer animation, 3d, 3d animation, 3d movie, 3d graphics, cgvilla

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