Flipbook Studio's special effects for a Star Wars fan movie that shows where the story began
Filmed in the Sahara Desert, Star Wars: Origins is the culmination of three years' work from director Phil Hawkins, executive producer Gary Cowan, Velvet Film and VFX facilities Flipbook Studio.
With over 100 4K VFX shots, it's not what you would expect from a typical fan movie, both in terms of production values and ambition.
The film takes a unique look at where the saga began. It's a thrilling action-adventure that draws inspiration from both Star Wars and Indiana Jones, telling an epic story based on Earth during WWII.
Starring Marie Everett (What Happened to Monday, Netflix), Jamie Costa (Han Solo: A Smuggler’s Trade), Hadrian Howard (The Mummy, Mi Rogue Nation) and Philip Walker, you can watch the full movie here.
Executive producer Gary Cowan approached Flipbook Studio last May before they started the shoot in Morocco in June. The footage arrived at the studio in October, giving them just eight weeks to do the shots. The most ambitious part was the star destroyer and its different stages: the internal shots, the temple and the full ship rising out of a dune after being buried for thousands of years.
Director Phil Hawkins said: "These folks at Flipbook have honestly blown me away with their work on the film. I'm not one of those filmmakers that do VFX themselves so handing over some of the most important and ambitious sequences to someone else makes me a little sick thinking about it. It's the lack of control that I find difficult. But, these talented artists have created ILM level effects for this film. They've done it purely for the love, passion for Star Wars and challenge of creating full-scale, ambitious sequences... and all in 4K!"
Ben Haworth, who is also the art director and co-founder of Flipbook Studio, had previously worked with Hawkins on advertising projects such as Motorpoint, which has since won the best TV campaign at the Prestigious Northern Marketing Awards, turning car salespeople into Superheroes and creating an incredibly photorealistic CG dragon for Vanquis.
"Phil is very much a practical director, and he likes the way we work. The Vanquis dragon convinced him that CGI is an option and that Flipbook Studio is up to any task he throws at us...including the development of Star Destroyers rising from sand dunes!"
Ben adds: "There are shots in the film like nothing else we've achieved before, and we've managed to tackle them in less than two months. That's over 100 shots at 4K!"