Todd McFarlane's SPAWN Movie Brings on THE WALKING DEAD's Greg Nicotero For VFX Work
Todd McFarlane continues to build his creative team for the live-action Spawn movie and he's brought on The Walking Dead's Greg Nicotero and his KNB EFX Group to provide the visual effects work for the film. Nicotero is one of the biggest names in the VFX business right now and there's no doubt that he and his team are going to gives us some top quality effects work for Spawn.
When talking about bringing Nicotero on to the project, McFarlane said:
"When I conceived of the story to start with, I never really thought of it as big special effects extravaganza because I knew we weren't going to have the budget for it. So I knew I was going to rely heavily on practical makeup and costuming, and one of the places that kept popping up was my good pal Greg Nicotero on his KNB Group. And he's obviously done a tremendous amount of work on dozens and dozens of movies. The sort of serendipitous part of it is that Greg was there at the beginning 20 years ago for the original Spawn movie."
Nicotero then added:
"I've been friends with Todd since we did the original Spawn, and the guy's just a genius. I love the way his mind works. He thinks very, very graphically. I know he really loves the idea of Spawn being dark, and I love the animated show. It's just a really great opportunity for us to get a chance to collaborate again."
McFarlane goes on to explain that this film will not look like the first film. This is going to be a completely different beast:
"I think it would be a mistake for people to go, 'Oh, it's going to look like the first movie.' No. That's not the task nor is that sort of where we're at creatively. So when I sat down with Greg and his staff, I just said, 'Here's what I see visually.' I gave them some reference at some images throughout the 25-year history of Spawn that I thought was close to what I was talking about. And then I just stepped back and let them start taking a whack at it.
"Each time they sent me something, I would then draw over it and go, 'Hey. How about a little bit of this, a little bit of that?' And then I thought very quickly we actually got to our look of what it is that we want to go at. KNB came out of the gate, showed me a wide, wide range of looks. I was able to narrow it down."
It's going to be really interesting to see what they've come up with visually, and I hope we get to see a tease of it sometime soon. Nicotero goes on to talk about McFarlane's take on Spawn and the work that went into designing the character:
"Spawn has always been a fascinating character study, and I really think that Todd's whole take on this is he really wants to be able to define superhero movies in a very different context than everybody is accustomed to. He really is the perfect guy to do it because he knows exactly how much he wants to see. He always liked that Spawn was kind of like the boogeyman, you know?
"It was a really fun ... We spent about six weeks coming up with some concept art, and designing the character, and a lot of it was kind of getting to the roots of what he's about. He's this sort of part feral animal, driven completely by this rage that he has, and he really embraced the idea of getting the sense of how much we want to see of this character, and what we want the audience to see. It's always the situation where you give the audience at times glimpses of things to allow them to put things together in their minds, and I think there's a very specific way that Todd wants to build these impressions of what Spawn is, and what he looks like by starting out with some kind of simple, very evocative imagery, and flashes. One minute he's there, and the next minute he's not. Kind of cool stuff."
McFarlane is directing the film and so far he's cast Jamie Foxx in the title role and Jeremy Renner in the role of Twitch, which is who the story will revolve around. McFarlane previously explained:
"There's two big roles in the script. There's obviously sort of Spawn himself, although in a weird way it's not the biggest role, and then there's the cop. The cop is this character Twitch who's been there since issue #1. Twitch is the role in this one, and I sort of refer to him as my sheriff Brody, who is the sheriff in the Jaws movie. Although it was called Jaws, Jaws didn't really talk a lot in his movie, right? He just kind of showed up at the opportune time to make the movie worthwhile."
He goes on to elaborate on how his Spawn movie compares to Jaws, saying:
"It was sheriff Brody, the humans talking, chasing the fantastical thing that sort of made the movie, and to me, there's that element. Everything else is normal in this story other than (gesture) the shadow moves, and at times even when it moves, the cop just sort of thinks he's losing his mind so he doesn't even trust that the shadow's moving. If you're a bad guy, then this thing is going to come and it's going to get you."
Spawn only has a budget of around $10 million dollars. It's set to start shooting in August and will be released sometime in 2019.