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The Secret Behind A Rush Hour Miracle


Director Fernando Livschitz’s personal artistic project “Rush Hour” has been viewed more than 2 million times in three days on Vimeo and it has the whole world talking! Reddit has been trending on this conversation which has also received a lot of attention in Japan. Have a look for yourself, and describe your experience.

SHP+ caught up with the talented award-winning director to understand the concept and process behind it all.

“The whole concept behind ‘Rush Hour’ was meant to give the audience a mixed experience both emotionally and mentally,” Fernando revealed – he wanted the viewer to feel the adrenaline rush. In order to really pull this off he had to arrange perfect choreography. Every second builds more anxiety, as the viewer assumes that someone is going to crash. Since not everyone is able to watch these movements comfortably in these UNcomfortable circumstances, Fernando used contrasting, relaxing background music to soothe the audience.

The entire film was created by a process know as rotoscoping – an animation technique in which animators layer footage over footage, frame by frame. It is both used for live-action and animated films. Fernando used rotoscoping for all the cars, people, bikers, etc. in the film. Rotoscoping was able to give Fernando the freedom to design the choreography, and to duplicate the scenes. It is just like putting together a puzzle.

The experimental project took a total of 20 minutes to shoot the scenes and post-production took approximately three weeks. All of the  filming took place on a small suspension bridge with lots of pedestrian traffic. Camera shake was inevitable due to the high pedestrian traffic flow, which made filming a challenge. Fernando had to re-shoot several times when someone would run across the bridge and shake the shot. He sat on the bridge patiently waiting for a time when he thought no one would cross the to shoot the scene again.

SHP+ can definitely agree that patience is a great skill to possess!

Some exclusive bonus information for SHP+ readers: Fernando shares his equipment list of making this marvelous piece – Blackmagic Pocket Camera for post-production, After Effects for the composition, and Mocha for motion-tracking.

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