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Tim Minear

Tim Minear - "Drive" Tv Series - Zoic Studios makes FX

Thursday 29 March 2007, by Webmaster

Zoic Studios is providing extensive visual effects work for the new Fox action series, Drive, which kicks off with a two-hour premiere at 8 p.m. on Sunday, April 15.

Having lent its talents to such shows as Firefly, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and 24, the award-winning company says its work on Drive involved creating images the likes of which have never been seen in a television production.

“Drive is a unique experience," says Zoic creative director/vfx supervisor Loni Peristere. "It is a rare challenge where the creators and studio allowed an experiment to run in production. As a result, Zoic was able to innovate a new method of photography and photorealistic CG to bring an omniscient camera to the car chase. It is a wandering eye without restrictions, able to find characters within moving vehicles and out in the world immersed in performance driving."

Starring Nathan Fillion (Slither, Serenity), Drive, a diverse group of Americans travel across the country in a high-stakes, underground road race. While some of the participants signed on willingly in hopes of winning a $32 million prize, others were coerced into joining "The Race"in order to save their lives or the lives of people they love.

The pilot features racing scenes in which the camera moves seamlessly from the open highway into, around and through moving vehicles. The sequences combine live-action stunt photography, a 220-degree matching highway psyclorama, green screen stage work and CG cars, reflections and characters. Led by Peristere, the extensive pre-visualization and planning phase gave the production and effects crews a meticulous road map to follow through the lengthy and complex process which incorporated several thousand layers.

While production is grounded in Los Angeles, Drive takes its characters to locations all over the country. This is achieved with green screen photography combined in post with location exteriors shot by a second unit. Each episode will involve more than 120 such composites.

Bringing big-screen production values to television is no big stretch for Zoic. The studio’ film credits include Joss Whedon’s Serenity, Judd Apatow’s Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby and Marcus Nispel’s upcoming Viking epic, Pathfinder.