100 Days, 100 Renders— Day 87


You know what movie I really liked this year? Star Trek Beyond. You know what Blu-Ray arrived in the mail yesterday?

I’m going to be honest, this project has made it kind of hard for me to go on and on and on about the details of my work the way I normally liked to. Still, I really want to talk about Star Trek Beyond, so I guess I’ll comment briefly on the re-design of the Star Trek ’09 version of the Enterprise for this movie. It’s damned funny-looking. The engines were shrunk down and pushed back, the pylons given a gentle arc back, and the neck was shaved down in the back. Also, a bunch of extra windows were added to the saucer, which is terrible.

The rest of the changes, though, are a good example of what you can do in a single movie as opposed to an ongoing concern. The shots of the Enterprise favored unusual angles with extremely wide lenses. Star Trek ’09 also favored close-ups on the ship, but it used longer lenses. Beyond gave every exterior a near-fisheye effect, and the change to the ship’s silhouette emphasized that, almost pre-adding the perspective distortion by increasing the distance between the familiar elements of the design. That wouldn’t fly in a TV show, or probably even a movie that wasn’t going to dispense with the design in the first act, but for this, the proportions of the ship itself could be tailored to the kind of shots it was appearing in, which is pretty neat.