3D World UK|February 2020
A look at Weta Digital's facial animation for the canine stars of Lady And The Tramp

The digital doggy leads | in Lady And The Tramp were created as doubles for their real-life counterparts to act as stand-ins when they had to perform anything a real dog can't do. Our main characters had to not just look like their real-life canine counterparts, but emote and speak with enough feeling to completely engage with the audience.

At Weta Digital we have a dedicated facial motion department that works across all creatures and characters, pushing the boundaries of photorealistic tacial performances and the specification for facial puppet rigging, then moulding it into a visually entertaining experience.

In any film, an actor's delivery of dialogue can make or break the story. It’s never just talking, but rather a vessel for revealing character and plot. In the case of Lady And The Tramp, the plot is largely revealed through the voices of the dogs, and talking dogs are not something our audiences are accustomed to seeing in the real world! Our fundamental goal on this project was to create facial performances that suspend belief and let the audience connect to the characters with conviction.


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February 2020