You can always count on filmmaker Taika Waititi to find the humor in almost any situation and Thor: Ragnarok is no exception. In addition to putting an undersized Thor against an oversized Hulk in an alien gladiatorial arena, the director himself performed and voiced the wisecracking rock man, Korg. Anytime your director is keen to suit up in a mocap suit you know you’re going to have some fun.

ILM’s animation team combined motion capture and keyframe animation to create the action packed fight sequence. This incarnation of Hulk is more comfortable in his own skin than we’ve seen in the past and in full control of his movements. Our model team resculpted Hulk’s face shapes based on Mark Ruffalo’s performance. We leveraged ILM’s Academy Award-winning facial performance capture system to lock on to every detail in Mark’s performance so we could translate it back through Hulk.

ILM artists constructed the massive arena and then filled it to the brim with a digital crowd that couldn’t get enough of the fight between the opposing heroes. Amping up the fight, our team referenced everything from martial arts films to MMA fights to a wrestling battle royal matches. Mixing the massive action moments with humor brings humanity to an otherwise brutal match.

Taika Waititi
ILM Visual Effects Supervisor
Chad Wiebe
ILM Animation Supervisor
Steve Nichols
ILM Visual Effects Executive Producer
Jeanie King