Set back in the late 1800s in a Victorian village, a man and woman by the names of Victor Van Dort and Victoria Everglot are betrothed because the Everglots need the money or else they'll be living on the streets and the Van Dorts want to be high in society. But when things go wrong at the wedding rehearsal, Victor goes into the woods to practice his vows. Just as soon as he gets them right, he finds himself married to Emily, the corpse bride. While Victoria waits on the other side, there's a rich newcomer that may take Victor's place. So two brides, one groom, who will Victor pick?Written by
The film's images were stored on a 1GB image card that was capable of holding approximately 100 frames of animation. Eight roving camera teams--each team including a lighting cameraman, an assistant, a lighting electrician and a set dresser to deal with any art department issues--worked with the animators to set up shots. Each camera team had a "lighting station" workstation--comprising an Apple G4 computer and a monitor to assist in checking lighting and framing--to view TIFF file versions of the camera's images. Once a shot was approved, the computer was removed and the animators were left to shoot the scene using their still camera and "grabber" computer/camera system to check their work. The film's story department head Jeffrey Lynch explained that the scenes were developed initially from storyboards created by a team, saying: "We shot as close to a 1:1 film ratio [one take per shot] as we could because there was no time for reshoots. We did most of our experimentation in the storyboard process--as many ways as needed--to get the scene how we wanted it. There was no coverage, as there would be for a live-action film." Co-director Johnson would go over each scene with the animators, sometimes acting out the scene, if necessary. The animators would create a "dope sheet"--in which a shot was broken down, frame by frame--to account for key "hits". The animators would then shoot tests of the scene, often shooting on "2s" or "4s" (meaning shooting just every second or fourth frame of what would appear in the final animation). Johnson explained: "The next day, when they'd finish their test/rehearsal, we'd cut it in and see how it played in the reel and fine-tune from there. We might do some lighting tweaks, performance tweaks or have the art department get in and touch anything that needed it. Then we'd close the curtain and let the animator animate the shot." The animators would sometimes make use of the voice and/or video recordings of the actors, a practice also common in cel animation. Once photographed, the frames were manipulated by a team of "data wranglers." Using a workflow developed by Chris Watts, the frames were downloaded from the camera image cards as RAW files, converted to Cineon files and processed through a "color cube." Cinematographer Pete Kozachik explained: "The color cube is a 3D lookup table created by FilmLight Ltd. that forces the image data into behaving like a particular Eastman Kodak film stock--in this case, 5248, one of my favorites. With this film emulation, we could actually rate our cameras at ASA 100, then take our light meters and spot meters and, with great confidence, shoot as if we were using 5248. Sure enough, the footage would come back and look just like it." The frames could be processed further to generate a TIFF file for viewing on the lighting station computer monitors so lighting, composition and color could be previewed. See more »
During the wedding rehearsal scene, Victoria's candle is not lit up until Lord Barkis sits down. When the camera shows Victor and Victoria's reactions, her candle is lit. See more »
Hear ye, hear ye, ten minutes to go 'til Van Dort's wedding rehearsal.
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During the introduction sequence, where the camera follows a butterfly around the town, it pauses and stands on the edge of the "Based on characters by" credit. See more »
After enchanting audiences with "The Nightmare Before Christmas," Tim Burton brings another stop-motion animated spectacle, "Corpse Bride." In this story, Victor Van Dort, an inept young groom-to-be, can't make his way through his wedding rehearsal. Going outside to get his lines right, he accidentally winds up marrying the corpse of a murdered bride-to-be. The animation is spectacular, proving stop-motion can be good enough to compete with computer animation. Johnny Depp provides the voice of Victor, showing mild-mannered and nervous grace. Helena Bonham Carter is the voice of Emily, the Corpse Bride, giving the dead character lively emotion. One striking element of the movie is the color scheme. In the living world, there is no bright color, making a near-black and white appearance. The story is well-written, and the music is good. Overall, "Corpse Bride" must definitely be seen!
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