Biyi Bandele

Our latest work - OUT ON DVD this summer

The Morrison Studio DVD Releases What a bumper month for us, as 4 of OUR LATEST TITLES GO OUT ON DVD within days of each other!

With the World Cup having come to a close this weekend. We expect many of you will fancy a night in without football, to watch one of the many great films being released on DVD this summer.

Fantastically for us at The Morrison Studio. 4 films we have created the title sequences for go out on UK release in the next few weeks, starting with John Roberts' Day of the Flowers releasing on the 21st July, followed by Pascal Chaumeil's A Long Way Down going out on the 28th July, finally with both John Michael McDonagh's Calvary and Biyi Bandele's Half of a Yellow Sun being released on the 4th August.

It's a great choice of entertainment for you too! With a mix of genre's to make you laugh or cry, smile or simply stare at the screen...

DAY OF THE FLOWERS Two Scottish sisters, one a left-wing activist, the other a popular party girl, travel to Cuba to scatter their late father's ashes. In losing and trying to reclaim their father's ashes, the bickering sisters set off on a journey that them takes them through romance, danger, and the discovery of old family secrets.

Stars: Eva Birthistle, Charity Wakefield and Carlos Acosta Runtime: 99 mins Previous Blog: http://wp.me/pIDnQ-ti

Day of the Flowers

A LONG WAY DOWN After he is threatened during a confession, a good-natured priest must battle the dark forces closing in around him.

Stars: Pierce Brosnan, Toni Colette, Imogen Poots and Aaron Paul Runtime: 96 mins Previous Blog: http://wp.me/pIDnQ-x1

A Long Way Down

CALVARY Four people meet on New Year's Eve and form a surrogate family to help one another weather the difficulties of their lives.

Stars: Brendan Gleeson, Chris O'Dowd, Kelly Reilly, Aidan Gillen and Dylan Moran Runtime: 100 mins Previous Blog: http://wp.me/pIDnQ-x1

Calvary

HALF OF A YELLOW SUN Sisters Olanna and Kainene return home to 1960s Nigeria, where they soon diverge on different paths. As civil war breaks out, political events loom larger than their differences as they join the fight to establish an independent republic.

Stars: Thandie Newton, Chiwetel Ejifor, Anika Noni Rose and John Boyega Runtime: 111 mins Previous Blog: http://wp.me/pIDnQ-D6

Half Of A Yellow Sun

We all think here at The Morrison Studio, that you'll have fun watching these new summer releases. We hope you enjoy our work and we look forward to sharing more with you and some new exciting news in the very near future. Happy viewing!

Half of a Yellow Sun Title Sequence

Half of a Yellow SunThe search for the idea for the opening sequence started with thinking around the ‘main title’. Our next thought was what would give us a moving metaphor? Something which would deliver a journey, bright, glamour and hopeful. Also most importantly, an object from the time, mid 60’s in which the movie is set. The answer - Mirror Ball.

As with all our sequences, a seamless entry into the first scene of the movie is imperative and the Mirror Ball again answers this with the addition of taking the view visually to Nigeria / Lagos, as you will see.

http://youtu.be/BjqvRrofhcU

Our DOP Jonathan Le Roux explains here how we shot the ball:

The approach we took to filming the mirror ball was to see it as a beautiful woman. So lighting her was fun.

I created a black box around the mirror ball with black Polyboards and black out. This would stop any reflections in the mirror ball. I cut a small hole in the Polyboard and created a window for the lens to peek through.

The choice of lens was our attempt to recreated the 70’s zoom. We could start wide on the mirror ball and then zoom into the small map of Africa, which was stuck onto the mirror ball.

The camera was set at native 800 iso, f-stop 4.5, this allowed more depth of field for the small lighting set up, (which you could not do with the older film stocks). It also created a wonderful filmic feel, no less to the exceptional qualities of the Alexa.

Half of a Yellow Sun Title Sequence Shoot

We shot various passes of the mirror ball spinning with different colours, blue then green, just blue and variations of that. The warmer tones we shot with the lighting having 1/2 CT Straw on the lamps. To add more warmth, I set the colour balance to 5600k. This was to reflect the warmth of Africa. There was also a pass with various colours in one shot. We would also have a pass with the smoke, giving depth to the image.

To create depth in the mirror ball, 4 dedo lights where used and one 1 KW Arri Fesnel with half diffusion. 1 kw fennel was used as the key, 1 deco was used as a backlight, the other 3 dedos where used to sculpt the mirror ball, allowing it to stand out from the black background. Dedo’s are great as they have dimmers on them, I could control the intensity of the direct light which I enjoy using.

Working with Richard and his team at The Morrison Studio was fantastic, they know what they want and get the results they need without fuss. What a wonderful day we had in the studio, lighting and playing with a mirror ball, the guys did a great job of assembly and finally the titles.

Half of a Yellow Sun Disco Ball

VFX, Supervisor Alexis Haggar of Lexhag also explains here how we built the comp: 

In order to create this sequence we needed to own the scene. This meant we had to find a way to have complete control over the shot. To do this we decided to shoot passes of several elements that we built up into a 3D comp.

First the ball was shot under serval lighting conditions, which we combined into one element and projected onto a sphere. Then we shot some smoke and atmos plates, which were keyed and placed on cards. Finally, a clean background of the reflected light was shot against black and used as a virtual back drop.

The sequence was animated with a virtual tracking move and the final touches were added, which included graphics and a grade.

Half of a Yellow Sun Journey Graphic 1In addition to the main sequence, Dean and I have designed the journey graphics within the film and animated in conjunction with Creative Director Howard Watkins at LipSync.

Half of a Yellow Sun Journey Graphic 2 We hope you like our sequence along with the film.

All images and clips shown here remain the property of their respected owners. Copyrights apply.

Shareman Identity for Half of a Yellow Sun

Ahead of next weeks BFI London Film Festival (9-20 October 2013) screening of Biyi Bandele's new film 'Half of a Yellow Sun'. This is the on-screen ident we developed for Shareman Media, who together with the BFI are presenting the Slate Films / Potboiler feature in association with Ealing Metro International, Kachifo Limited and Lipsync Productions.

Fresh back with great reviews from TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival - The ident presents before the film for which we also created the title sequences.

The film is out on main release later this year.

We hope you enjoy...

http://youtu.be/tuqs5nuelcY

57th BFI London Film Festival

57th BFI London Film Festival The programme for the 57th BFI London Festival launched today with exciting news of the films screening this year and those that are running in competition. With a number of films featuring which are fresh from both the Toronto and Venice festivals, having already wowed audiences and gained glowing reviews. This years event is already looking like it's going to be a great feast of viewing splendor.

Having created the title sequence for one of those films 'Half of a Yellow Sun', we are delighted to see Biyi Bandele's new film screen back here in London as part of the BFI's Strands and Pathways 'Dare' category. And my dear friend Stephen Frears' film 'Philomena' starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan screen as part of the Sponsored Galas. The festival programme is again organised into focused categories that are formed around the themes of Love, Debate, Dare, Laugh, Thrill, Cult, Journey, Sonic and Family. An approach designed to help festival goers to find the films they want to see and also expose to new audiences.

Half of a Yellow Sun and Philomena

The festival will screen a whopping total of 234 features, combined of both fiction and documentary films. Which include 22 World Premiere's, 16 International Premiere's and 29 European premiere's. London's film festival has never had it so good... with Director Paul Greengrass' new film 'Captain Phillips' starring Tom Hanks opening the festival, and who commented at the official launch saying "The British film industry has never been better, with the best filmmaking talent in the world now regularly coming to London to make movies".

He's right too... now is a great time for movie making, not just for the British film industry, but filmmakers all around the world. And the timing for the BFI's annual event couldn't be any better.

Paul Greengrass Captain Phillips Tom Hanks

Venues across the capital, from the West End Cinemas to the central London venues, including the Odeon West End, Vue West End, Odeon Leicester Square; which recently we attended for the World Premiere of Morgan Spurlock's One Direction film 'This Is Us', Curzon Mayfair, Ciné Lumière and this years new addition the Cineworld Haymarket, will be screening all of the films during the 12 day event. And we can't wait for it to get going.

In addition to all the film screenings. Special Events, Screen Talks and Master Classes will take place during the festival. With attendances to Gala Screenings by key talent such as: Paul Greengrass, Tom Hanks, Barkhad Abdi, Faysal Ahmed, Barry Ackroyd, John Lee Hancock, Emma Thompson, Alison Owen, Stephen Frears, Judi Dench and Steve Coogan, Steve McQueen, Chiwetol Ejiofor, Alfonso Cuaron, David Heyman, Sandra Bullock, Joel & Ethan Coen, Carey Mulligan, Oscar Isaac, Ralph Fiennes, Abdellatif Kechiche, Lea Seydoux, Adele Excharchopoulos, Alain Guiraudie, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Alexander Payne, Lukas Moodysson.

The final show will be the European Premiere of Disney's Saving Mr. Banks, which will close the festival continuing the initiative from last year with the Closing Night Red Carpet event and screening being screened simultaneously to cinemas across the UK.

Saving Mr Banks

Hope you can all make it, and we look forward very much to seeing you there.

All copyrights to images remain the property of their respective owners.

Half of a Yellow Sun Premiere's at TIFF

Half of a Yellow Sun at TIFF 2013

Yesterday saw the long awaited World Premiere of Biyi Bandele's 'Half of a Yellow Sun' at the Toronto International Film Festival. The first of 3 screenings took place at the Winter Garden Theatre and was well attended by both stars and crew for one of the most anticipated films of this year.

It was the first time ever for a Nigerian film to get a red-carpet screening at such a major event. British-born Nigerian actor Chiwetel Ejiofor (Inside Man, American Gangster) and Thandie Newton (Crash, The Pursuit of Happiness) lead the way down the carpet, along with other cast members Anika Noni Rose (Dreamgirls), John Boyega (Attack the Block) as well as Genevieve Nnaji and Onyeka Onwenu.

Based on the award winning novel by Nigerian author, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, the film produced by Andrea Calderwood at Slate FIlms (Generation Kill, The Last King of Scotland) is screening again at Scotiabank 4 today and on Saturday.

We look forward to hearing some great reviews from the festival and the films world release in November.

Read our previous blog on the film and see the trailer here: http://richardmorrison.wordpress.com/2013/08/01/half-of-a-yellow-sun-official-trailer/

(Photo by Jerod Harris/Getty Images)