There was an interesting piece on the LA Times blog about the visual effects of Benjamin Button called the “Wizards of Hollywood.” This time it’s Button’s wizard, Steve Preeg, who was the brains behind Gollum in the Lord of the Rings series:
My most memorable scene is from “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” the one we referred to as “Benjamin‚Äôs Secret,” where he is under the table with Daisy when they first meet. He’s explaining to her how he‚Äôs different. A sort of revelation to himself, that he‚Äôs hearing people talk that he‚Äôs going to die soon but he doesn’t know anything about it.
This series of shots is very close up and dialogue driven. It looks to the viewer that it’s a 70-year-old man with a 9-year-old girl late at night under a table, and that’s rather disturbing. But we had to make it innocent enough that it feels like a 15-year-old that is confused about things and still has to be Brad. We were trying to make a dirty old man feel innocent and do it in computer.