I enjoy seeing pre-production work and concept art for films. This kind of stuff plays a huge part in developing a film, yet it's stuff a lot of people don't really think about. Artist Federico D'Alessandro created this amazing animatic for Iron Man 3 that envisioned how the epic mansion attack would play out. What's cool about this is the animatic is almost exactly what we ended up seeing in the movie, and it was done way before they started shooting. Here's a statement from the artist in which he talks about his experience making it.
I worked on IRON MAN 3 as the Lead Storyboard Artist and Animatics Supervisor, and during that time I created a lot of fun animatics. This was my favorite one, and was translated to the final film pretty closely!
I met with Shane Black very early during pre-production to discuss this scene. Even in the early stages, the sequence seemed gargantuan. So much needed to happen in a relatively short amount of time, and I knew that this would be my most challenging animatic yet. The beauty of the way Shane works is that he’s not only a brilliant storyteller but he’s very open to other ideas, and during my time on the show he trusted me as a creative collaborator. I wanted to reward the freedom he gave me and that led to some of my best work I’ve done for Marvel yet. After a few story meetings with Shane where we hashed out a lot of beats together, he gave me control of the scene and I went to work figuring out how to turn this sequence into a visual spectacle.
Creating this animatic was a technically challenging process as I was trying a lot of new techniques not normally found in animatics. The storytelling had to be tight, the energy frenetic, and the action clear. One of the things I focused on was a “good news, bad news” stacking of the beats…Tony gets out of a bind, only to be faced with another challenge which he overcomes but then he is immediately dealt a fresh problem. As much as anything else, Tony needed to outthink his attackers.
Thankfully Shane and Marvel were ecstatic with the end result. By the time the animatic was approved by all the powers-that-be, were still many months away from shooting, but I think having this kind of scene locked down so early allowed Marvel to carefully strategize all the necessary elements to make this very complex scene come to life. In the end, they ended up following my animatic almost shot-to-shot, so seeing that on screen was an amazingly gratifying experience.
Now check out the animatic!