“Bait always delivered and delivered and delivered some more. ”

Born to Kill

TV Drama

We completed all of the VFX for World Productions on recent Channel 4 show Born to Kill, working closely with BAFTA-winning Director Bruce Goodison (Murdered by my Father, Leave to Remain). Born to Kill is a haunting exploration of the mind of Sam (Jack Rowan), a teenager who’s on the verge of acting out hidden psychopathic desires.

 

“Bait were consistently supportive and creatively responsive to their work on [Channel 4’s] Born to Kill. Christian Lett was always on hand as was Lucy Lawson-Duckett and they always delivered and delivered and delivered some more. Bait’s work is of a high calibre, the smash on Peter’s head and the subsequent bleed was queasy and realistic and still makes me slightly nauseous thinking about it.” ~ Bruce Goodison, Director, Born to Kill


 

We were involved with Born to Kill from the script stage onwards, providing advice during pre-production, on-set supervision across the shoot and creative input throughout. We provided tests, storyboards and previs for key scenes (particularly for the boat fight in Episode 4, which needed careful choreography) to help bring Bruce’s vision to life on screen and made suggestions on how to use VFX best to enhance the story.

 

There were three major sequences that we were asked to design the visual effects for on Born to Kill. The opening shot of the first episode seamlessly spliced an exterior shot taken on location, with a handheld shot filmed in the studio, as if the camera had craned up and through Sam’s bedroom window (unfortunately the shot was cut during editing). Sam’s daring rooftop jump in episode two was extensively storyboarded and mapped out on a plan of Llandough Hospital, along with concept art for the matte painting of Sam’s precarious landing spot.

 

Christian Lett, VFX Supervisor, was present throughout the filming of Born to Kill, working closely with Bruce, and the Directors of Photography Sam Care and Joel Devlin. He explained, “The gory anchor attack in episode four was the most complex sequence, but we fully storyboarded and planned it, working in collaboration with the makeup, art and camera departments. Because of the location and tight filming schedule the decision was made to produce the fatal wound entirely in VFX. On location the actor wore tracking dots which were used to track movement on his face.”

 

Llyr Williams, Lead VFX Artist, explained in greater detail:

“We built a CG model of Richard Coyle’s (Peter) head from a headscan, which was used to accurately track his movement to the footage. From this geometry we modelled the wound and a partially severed ear. There was some blood on the actor’s hand but the rest was added digitally, as the wound opens, blood runs down his face and drips on to his clothes.

All the work was completed in Houdini and Nuke. Houdini’s procedural workflow meant we could easily art direct the action and the smart vector toolset in Nuke 10 proved invaluable in tracking blood on to the neck and clothes.

The final result is a gory effect which is slowly revealed, matching the timing of Peter’s stunned reaction, something which would have been very difficult to achieve in camera.”

 

You can catch Born to Kill on All4 now

Echoes of Time v2 by Kevin MacLeod is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license Source Artist

 

Credits

  • Visual Effects Supervisor:

    Christian Lett

  • Visual Effects Production Manager:

    Lucy Lawson-Duckett

  • Visual Effects Producer:

    Peter Rogers

  • Lead Visual Effects Artist:

    Llyr Williams

  • Senior Compositor:

    Paul Vorsman

  • Compositor:

    Anthony Williams

  • Junior Compositor:

    Robin Rhee

  • Storyboard Artist:

    Francesca Fornoni