Digital Creature Creations
Do you remember the bug scene in King Kong (the latest 2005 version) where the heroes get dumped by Kong into the bottom of a ravine filled with slimy many-legged insects that just happen to be five feet in length? Well, one of those creepy crawlies might just have been a weta.
A weta you say ... what is that?
Weta are an insect species endemic to the New Zealand archipelago. Weta are large by insect standards, some species among the largest and heaviest in the world. Their physical appearance is that of a cross between a cockroach and a cricket with the addition of large legs.
Yup, there definitely might have been a weta in the menagerie of critters running amok in that valley. Especially since those creatures were created by the digital artists at Weta Digital.
Weta Digital is the company responsible for visual effects seen in films like King Kong and the Lord of the Rings trilogy. And it has also won four out of six of the last visual effects Oscars. A very nice calling card for the company.
Matt Aitken, visual effects supervisor for Weta Digital talks about how labor-intensive artistry is married with the most sophisticated of computer technologies.