FXguide: Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb

In order to demonstrate that the powers of the Tablet of Ahkmenrah are diminishing, it was shown to be corroding. Proof previs’d the look for these tablet shots, with Cinesite completing the finals.

“The clients supplied an initial static concept which we used as a start point for the look of the green corroded surface,” says Cinesite visual effects supervisor Zave Jackson. “We sourced additional images of interesting rust textures as well as other weathered and tarnished metals and built these into our corrosion texture in MARI. These textures where also used to drive displacement in Mudbox. The animating leading edge was look developed taking reference from time lapse photography of metals being corroded by acid and other corrosive substances, we used NUKE’s particle system and a more straight forward 2d noise generation tool that we built in NUKE.”

“The clients preferred the look of the animation and the random activity created by the 2d noise tool,” adds Jackson, “so we went with this approach and created an animating mask the could be used to reveal on the corrosion texture. This sounds simple enough, the tricky part to this was accurately texture mapping this with sufficient resolution onto the somewhat unusual geometry of the tablet with its multiple parts, rotating sections and 32 tile UV set. The look of the green glow to the edge was created in the comp.”