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Design & VFX

Pacific Rim Uprising

Clients: Legendary Entertainment
Categories: Film & TV

Tapped to create holographic control surfaces and display systems for the iconic Jaeger robots in Pacific Rim: Uprising, Territory worked closely with Dneg to bring the man-machine interactions to life.

Coming on board in post, Territory’s team was responsible for concepting, design, animation, texturing, lighting and shot delivery of the complex holographic ‘connpod’ consoles that feature in the film, and final assets for tables and screens.
The dynamic holographic display systems were customized to show the technological sophistication of each of the four ‘hero’ Jaeger models, and designed to tie in with specific storybeats and support actors’ performance. Working at the highest standard using our bespoke VFX pipeline, we delivered over 280 final VFX shots for the film.

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Final Film Shots

Console & Display Development

A series of extensive meetings with VFX Supervisor Peter Chiang clarified the design principles of the different Jaegers. Tasked to reflect the technical evolution and sophistication of the different models, we also needed to give each Jaeger distinct ‘personalities’ in the design and graphic language of holographic consoles.

We began by exploring quite a few routes in the shape language, which needed to be unique for each Jaeger, and ways of creating complexity and volume for the interfaces. In addition to the aesthetic consideration, we grounded each console design in ergonomic constraints to ensure that the displays felt like a natural extension of the actors’ movements.

 

Jaeger Console States

Having established the concept of a central, roughly cylindrical core as the heart of each interface console, we built out different Jaeger versions. Creating configurations based on the different states they needed to be in for any sequence, we designed distinctive bootup, recon, damage and battle states. This created behavioural rules for how the consoles scaled up and down. For example, when the pilots are in battle, the consoles move out of their way, allowing freedom of movement without risk of clashing with the interfaces.

UI Development

Designing the user interfaces and visual language for each holographic console and display involved specific challenges. From the right materials and shaders, transparency and colour palette, to typography and iconography, we needed to reflect and give distinction to each Jaeger. All these elements also needed to co-exist consistently in a constantly dynamic form that scaled up and down according to the needs of any sequence.

Before and after

Delivering 280 shots for the film, the final result is a series of sharp, sophisticated and dynamic holographic interfaces that support the advanced world and technology of the evolved Jaegers, also tying into actors' performance and storybeats.

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