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The Making of 'Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within' (2001)

A behind the scenes look at the creation of Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within (2001)


Tarquin Cardona


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Credited cast:
Alec Baldwin ... Himself
Steve Buscemi ... Himself
Francisco Cortina Francisco Cortina ... Herself
Angela M. Eliasz Angela M. Eliasz ... Herself
Elliot Goldenthal ... Himself
Matthew Hackett Matthew Hackett ... Himself
Spencer Knapp Spencer Knapp ... Himself
Tani Kunitake Tani Kunitake ... Himself
Bo Mosley Bo Mosley ... Himself
Takao Noguchi Takao Noguchi ... Himself
James Rogers James Rogers ... Himself
Hironobu Sakaguchi ... Himself
Roy Sato Roy Sato ... Himself
Remington Scott Remington Scott ... Himself
Donald Sutherland ... Himself


A behind the scenes look at the creation of Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within (2001)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

final fantasy | See All (1) »


Documentary | Short






English | Japanese

Release Date:

23 October 2001 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Zuma Digital See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


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Did You Know?


This documentary is featured on the second disc of the Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within (2001) Special Edition DVD. See more »


Features Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within (2001) See more »

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User Reviews

Show me the way, Aki, I'll follow you anywhere
15 December 2010 | by Chip_douglasSee all my reviews

This fast paced documentary has it all: production art, pre-viz, block models, motion capture footage, boards & blasts, concepts, but what it doesn't have is any body's name on screen whenever one of the behind the scenes people speaks. Luckily a lot of them introduce themselves. The second, extra filled disc that comes with some versions of Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within is almost as inventively done as the movie itself, starting off with a brilliant little intro that sees Aki and other animated characters walk off the set and into the real world. Unlike other DVD menu's that you want to skip immediately and get to the content, this one has so much stuff to look at it's a shame you can't pause and rewind it. And it leads directly into the extra features menu, with emphasis on this 30 minute main documentary (which in my book justifies me writing almost an entire paragraph about it).

Don't expect a lot of input from the voice cast going in. Most of the big name stars do make an appearance, but none are on screen for very long and some can literally be missed in the blink of an eye. What we get instead is a lot of useful insight into the development of the movie as conceived by Sakaguchi san that is all about the Gaia theory (in fact, the original title of the film was Gaia). Bits from the blooper reel pop up again and as usual all the whiz kids and animators are recognizable by wearing goatees or big soul patches. It turns out that one of them, Matt Hackett, was the facial inspiration for General Hein and not Jack Nicholson (or voice actor Jimmy Woods).

On a project like this, everybody has a cool sounding job. For instance, Takao is supervisor of the Phantom project. Spencer Knapp goes deep sea diving to simulate the effects of the High Density Gas (HDG) as seen in the film. It turns out you need a lot of footdust when a crowd of phantoms is running, so that becomes some people's day job on this show as well. Sakaguchi wanted a unique sound for this movie. to not sound like any other. So Randy Thom uses animal sounds and when these don't suffice, he makes some himself. On top of all this information, there are a whole bunch of short interactive side tracks (I lost count at 17) that the viewers can choose to pop up and interrupt the documentary. These range from interesting tidbits to some more questionable inclusions, and together they just about double the documentary's running time. And I still think the film would have done just fine at the box office if only the (doomed) distributing company hadn't been called 'Square Pictures'. That was just asking for trouble.

8 out of 10

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