Everyone has heard of the book series and now TV show Game Of Thrones. Not everyone has seen how much work goes into the effects in this show. There are literally layers of green screen effects being put into place just for mere seconds of footage.
When working with a green screen (especially on a production of this scale), the first thing that has to happen is Pre-Production. There needs to be a very clear understanding of the vision being created for the big screen. As seen in many of these shots, a vast location for their endless warriors and magnificent mountain ranges needed to be found. They needed giants, skeletons, zombies…
Rather than discuss the amount of crew needed to pull this off (wardrobe, talent, make up artists, grip, audio techs, digital techs…huge list) I will stick to just the part about the screens.
In many of these cases, location scouts will find places or know of places that fit the visuals needed for the story. Once the location is scouted, viewing angles need to be thought out (In order to make the decisions on whether or not to build a set or create it in post-production). Once decisions have been made, locations will be built out and fitted with the necessary screens. Screens are usually moved around scenes so that they can be used in various viewing angles by the camera. This however can be dangerous in windy locations (as I personally can attest to). Again, knowing before hand all the when, where, why, how…will really make a difference.
Once shooting is finished, screens will be masked out in post-production. As you can see in the scenes above, they were having to capture multiple camera angles with green screens and the put the various layers and elements together. One more reason that pre-production is so key to filming! As they composite these scenes together they also need to think about scale, color, flow… At the end of every one of these takes you will notice that the color changes. The reason being, when color is added to a composite, it helps marry the layers together in a way that makes them seem like they were really shot that way.
I hope you enjoyed watching the magic of this world come together as much as we did!