New 3D-Printing Technology Was ‘Missing Link’ for Laika’s Latest Stop-Motion Project

  • Variety
New 3D-Printing Technology Was ‘Missing Link’ for Laika’s Latest Stop-Motion Project
For the upcoming animated comedy adventure “Missing Link,” stop-motion studio Laika set the bar very high. To execute the designs created by director and writer Chris Butler, artists would have to speed up their 3D printing of character faces — and those faces would have to be the most complex they’d ever created.

Missing Link” centers on Sir Lionel Frost (voiced by Hugh Jackman), a self-styled investigator of myths and monsters whose skill is not acknowledged by his small-minded high-society peers. So Frost travels to the Pacific Northwest to prove the existence of the legendary Missing Link (voiced by Zach Galifianakis). Other voice actors include Zoe Saldana, Timothy Olyphant and Emma Thompson.

Laika, based in Portland, Ore., brought to “Link” its signature handcrafted stop-motion animation, which it couldn’t have developed without the speed of 3D-printing technology. While the concepts of hand crafting and digital printing may seem at odds with each other,
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