Sintel, the Durian Open Movie Project » Blog Archive » First Minute Update

    

First Minute Update

on March 19th, 2010, by Colin Levy

Okay okay, should’ve probably updated you on this stuff earlier.

The first minute has gone through some radical changes since the last time I posted about it, and I think it’s much improved!

To bring you up to speed, the first thing I did was try an alternate ending for the bandit fight, partially based on the comments I received on the blog. I restructured things a bit to give it more of a frantic quality, and to better introduce the Shaman character. I can upload this version if you’re interested.

But a few weeks ago we decided replace the scene with another section of the fight scene that was originally placed later in the film. I think this change really streamlined the film and made it feel much more cohesive. An unavoidable biproduct of this choice is that we’ve completely scrapped three of the four guardian characters. (!)

Anyway, check out the current version of the first scene! Except for the last few shots, which are still in layout, the entire scene has been brought to *final* animation by Lee Salvemini. I could also show the layout version of the whole scene if you’re interested.

Jan Morgenstern is also doing great stuff on the sound for this scene as well! Dialogue edit and mix are perhaps not 100% final, but it’s getting close. See if you can spot the cameo in the soundscape! :P

Next time: renders!

–Colin

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138 Responses to “First Minute Update”

  1. blenderificus Says:

    look like the video is private, hopefully we can view it soon… cant wait to see the first minute thus far. :-)

  2. Dusty Says:

    This video is private?

  3. Tom Says:

    Please… make the video non private 0:)

  4. Davis Says:

    Indeed, the video is private.

  5. Agiofws Says:

    its private ? who are thy chosen ?

  6. Inlite Says:

    Very cool, I definitely prefer this version to the earlier one – Keep it up!

  7. D Says:

    Thanks Colin! I am too happy to comment further. :)

  8. Pablo Vazquez Says:

    fixed!, I think?

    Yay fixed, for some reason took some time for YouTube to update the video, I changed it to Shareable as soon as I saw the blogpost (even changed the name just as test), weird =/

  9. Agiofws Says:

    Ok cool you should make a teaser Fast ? :)

  10. spacetug Says:

    I liked the fancy snowy sintel title better :)

  11. First Sceptical but now convinced Says:

    When you showed the first “First-Minute”-video i was sceptical that this movie is going to be epic. But i am convinced now after watching this version. Cool! :D

  12. Quentin.G Says:

    Yay!
    that’s amazing guys!
    keep going !

    Yeah, a teaser would be great, but for it, Agiofws, I think they need to finalize things and use some parts of the final movie :D

  13. Dmitry (Дмитрий) Says:

    Very good animation.

  14. tyrant monkey Says:

    you guys should put all the first minute drafts that you have posted on the web on the Sintel disc it would be nice to see them all with some directors commentry thrown in to show how things changed and why the did.

    The are getting better and better

  15. 3dementia Says:

    It looks good, shocking news about the guardians, maybe you could use them somewhere else like in the town, at least get the characters in there as crowd people, maybe just a knowing look from one of them and short eye contact with Sintel, that extra bit of intrigue and danger. Use your assets wisely!

  16. Simon Says:

    Sweet! Very intense fight, not too acrobatic or crazy. I really like it.

  17. Madmantos Says:

    Good idea to keep less bandits, it gives more time to make a better animation* on just one or two bad guys and Sintel, and less calculation for render, simpler is often better.

    Keep up the good job!

    (*): remind me in HK action movies those fights with multiple bad guys doing nothing but watching and grumbling instead of attacking the hero, laughing moments…

  18. joel Says:

    much, MUCH beter :)
    also glad to hear about the guardians, i only liked the one with the mustache (glad you decided to keep that one) i found the other ones uninteresting.

    One thing i do hope will change with the guardian is to make him more asian (mongolian). i think a mongolian character as guardian in that terrain is logical since their race is used to dealing with the cold tough weather.
    and changing his face just a bit (jaw and eyes) woudnt be to much work.

    keep it up

  19. radek Says:

    Epic.

  20. Adrian Says:

    Loving the changes ‘More epic’, yes indeed! loving the animation quality too… you guys/girls are good :-)

  21. Rovanion Says:

    I love how the quality of the animation switches inbetween scenes :-P

  22. Irve Says:

    I’d definetly like to see the improved guardian fight. The scrapped one.

    And yes, this beginning is very good. Very urgent indeed :)

  23. pb Says:

    I’m sure Ben’s like, “Awe what?!?! You’re getting rid of three of them? After all that time I spent on those guardians… sheesh… I’m… uh… I’m just going over to the corner to have a… uh… little moment by myself…” :)

    Honestly, it’s both a tough and brave decision to make given the amount of effort already put into the opening sequence. And the result? Agree, it’s more streamlined and less jarring. Still wish the other 3 could jump out and do some kung fu hustle but you got to be realistic and balance the whole thing properly.

    As for the 3 MIAs, I’m sure you could find a good use for them elsewhere so not to waste the effort. Either turn up later in the story or maybe even have them already lying dead on the ground while the opening fight sequence goes on (where the guy attacking Sintel thinks she’s possibly responsible for their deaths and that’s why he attacks).

  24. alalo Says:

    Looks really nice :) Also, I am in not in favour of a 15yo girl kicking the ass of 4 guardians quickly, like it used to be. That was blatantly epic, imo :) This fight looks epic and intense.. also, it has beginning, middle and end. The other gave the sensation that the four guardians just stood in front of the gate and she went to them inconsequently.

    But… I have to agree with 3dementia. The guardians could be placed in strategic points of the city. Maybe they work for the local PD? Maybe they suppress the population in a dictatorship? :D heheheh Just think they should not be wasted.

    Cheers!

  25. Mad_Alien71 Says:

    First viewing: Close to awesome. Fight scene looks more frantic now. I’ll miss Jack and the other two guardians… :(
    Second viewing: some unnatural stillness in 1:08-1:09 and in the intro.

  26. Mad_Alien71 Says:

    (…cont., too fast submit)
    Looking forward to the finished movie. Keep up with the good work!

  27. Irve Says:

    One more thing, make the guardian hand droop. He’d be quite unable to move the hand, since his shoulder muscles are cut.

  28. Gianmichele Says:

    Looks great guys!

    Just a tiny tiny animation note: there seem to be not too much reaction in the shoulder area when Sintel gets hit. I would espect more struggle in that part given the action.

    Other than that you guys are doing an amazing work on the animation side, can’t wait to see the face.

  29. Philas Says:

    way, way better.
    Timing and action are greatly improved here.

    And is more logical a 15 yo can defeat 1 guardian instead of 4, but how many hours working on the other three! please don’t waste them completely, reuse them in the city, even from distance or as crowd.

    To all, please guys,
    what if we cut short all those ridicoulous “Epic!” “Epic awesomness!” and so on, and start make constructive critics instead of childish fanboysm?

  30. ruddy Says:

    Love the timing! :)
    + 1 about re-using the 3 other guardians elsewhere!

  31. Wild_Doogy Says:

    Sweet! I cant wait for the finished movie.

    My two cents:
    My first thought ~0:26 was, “oh look, Sintel, How did she get there?”
    Now I realise that you are starting out the movie with a bang, and that no one knows what is going on at the beginning, but it seemed to me, from the direction that Sintel was walking, that she was coming from the cliff edge?
    If you could change her position/direction if the very first scene to show that she is skirting the outcropping that the guardian is standing on, it might enable the viewers to catch some backstory at first glance. “she has been hiking in these mountains for a long time now, etc”
    (That is unless I have no idea what the story is, and I dont know what I am talking abut.)

    About the 3 MIAs, using them as local PD ish characters, (especially with a “meaningfull look” scene would be great!)

    I did want to see Sintel kick 4 guardians, but from what I have seen of her characture so far, I see what you cut it out.

  32. EdgyMunkey Says:

    The Guardian sounds like Ton! :D

  33. Jan - 2 Says:

    Come on!! The “Epic!” “Epic awesomness!” comments are fine. Don’t worry be happy.

    Perhaps the other 3 guardians could guard the credits at the end with smiles on their faces, perhaps they could point to the credits. Or sitting down having a drink as if they are watching the credits as well.

    Great work everyone, I can’t wait to see the movie.

  34. Malcolm Zaloon Says:

    Very good this decisions… but… i have 3 observations.

    1.i think there are still room for animation refinement in “final animation” takes…
    2.there are too a strange (unnatural) rotation of right wrist in first scenes…
    3. i think, that after fight, Sintel, in the subsequent takes, needs some seconds more to take in consideration your tired/recovering state(breath) to ingress in final take (long walk to some distant place).
    Malcolm.

  35. gandalf Says:

    One note, I know it’s fantasy and all, but humans really don’t take knife stabs that easily. No human being on earth could take out a knife that has been stabbed into his arm/neck and use it to attack an opponent. Cutting tendons, muscles and nerves results in a shock and a serious bleeding. Especially since the stab, as presented on a screen, will harm internal organs – heart or lungs.

    I know that popular culture and asian martial arts built this narrative of people fighting nights, jumping around, small people winning with big armed guys. I know you decided to use some of it (Sintel is skinny, she has no way power enough to handle a heavy wepon, not to say about using it), but in a same way you don’t introduce people walking after their head has been chopped, or people running with their legs broken, I suggest not letting a guy attack after being stabbed that badly. Maybe a minor cut through his face, maybe a minor cut through his body, but not a full stab, please! :)

  36. andy Says:

    Nice animation, but the wind affects the cape but not the hair?

  37. Todd Says:

    Very promising.

    This newer version has a way better flow to it.
    Looking forward to seeing more.

  38. rogper Says:

    WOW! That’s the way :) I like it very much now!
    I appreciated allot that 2nd person view point fights, makes it very emotional.

  39. Victor Says:

    Now I have confidence about the short. The animation it’s quite good. Keep this level.

  40. Victor Says:

    And yeah, the guardian voice is EPIC! :D

  41. Achim Luebbeke Says:

    I think the scene is a good base to start from.
    Give it more time and more weight!
    In the beginning:
    It is cold and the wind blows at her body from the front, so should try, at least to cover her front with the cloak. It isn’t necessary that the audience sees her wonderful body but to see the coldness and her desperate situation, maybe, you can make her shiver as well. Let her walk along the hillside, trying to get a bit more shelter from the cold wind. Right before the guardian notices her, she could leave the hillside to get a better sight of the plateau, looking for a path or whatever.
    When she defeated the guardian:
    Show how close the heavy stinky threatening guardian came to her, maybe, breathing his last air into her face.
    Avoid this medium long shot (complete view) – it already releases the viewer from the tense of the situation. Keep with the close shots until she recovers and is able to raise her head after he is dead. Keep a doubt, whether the situation is save or not, maybe, let the guardian grab her arm, or at least let the hand touch her arm, and let her unwillingly recoil, afraid to get buried under his corps.
    Finally, when the guardian fell aside and we see her face close, give her time, taking breath, deeply, more than once, split the turn of her head in several steps, turning while lying on the ground, still without strength to raise it, getting dust in her face, closing the eyes to protect them, and then raising the head additional to the turn to get a sight above the dust which mainly drifts close to the ground.
    To make it epic the details need to get time! :)
    To jump from the close ups to the long shot is good, but, as I mentioned, I would keep with the close ups while she lies at the ground.

  42. Eibriel Says:

    Wow!!! Is just a draft and I have feeling that. I can’t wait for the final versionnn!!! :D Jan Morgenstern is really a great artist.

  43. tyrant monkey Says:

    hum I forgot to ask this one, she does have a change of outfit does she, like some warm clothes, it would look plenty strange to be fighting in a frozen wasteland in a tank top.

  44. Luis Felipe Says:

    Looks great so far, he first thing i felt right after i finish watching the video is that I have no idea why she’s there in the first place and why is she being attacked? but i guess this is the idea and tought you want the people to have after this minute and a half. When the second person dies, I think it would be even more dramatic to have a close up of his face, maybe even his eyes, to show how much he is suffering.

    The only thing I don’t understand is why at the very end of this minute and a half, the character falls? If she was strong enough to kill two guys, why is she so weak afterwards? Perhaps is better to show her curled up walking slowly agains the bitter cold than to have her walking up straight then falling. Unless of course she has facial expressions at the beginning that show weakness that would go well with the ending bit.

    Also why does she stop right before the first guard attacks? Maybe she feels weak and needs to drink a potion to get better but is interrupted by guard. Or maybe she is lost and looking for directions?

    I also agree with Achim about when the guard falls next to her, she gets up to quick. Like i say before, if she is weak, it would take her a lot of time to get up. So this part was a bit too fast pace in my opinion.

    great work everyone at Blender Foundation, I’ve been following this project for a while and it seems a lot of progress is done. Well done everyone involved!

  45. TheTinyToon Says:

    Yes, it feels a lot more consistent and smoother than the last version – good job! :)

    And now for the tiny perfectionist in my head (sorry ;) ):

    I think that the idea of splitting the introductionary text in two would be okay for a long movie, but not for this short 8-minute feature.

    The scene seems to be deserted and in the middle of nowhere. However, Sintel does not have anything with her at the moment – no bag, no food, no water. I’d at least give her a bigger “handbag” if not even a backpack. A Handbag around the shoulder could be cut during the first attack and so not hinder her during the fight. After the fight, she picks up the ripped strings and drags it behind her, before finally collapsing.

  46. Jacob Says:

    Simply amazing, and this isn’t even the render. The animation looks great and I love the camera work. Thank you guys!

  47. D.C. Says:

    To start off… Story is, well, lacking. Not overall plot. But the scene story. The scene setup. The body language is not very readable. It comes across as two random people, who we couldn’t careless about, brawling in the middle of nowhere, for no particular reason. So far there is no way to tell who is the hero and who is the evil thug. If your just randomly killing some one your a bad person, not a hero. Add more provocation before the killing. We want to love the hero and hate the villains. You can’t love someone who just randomly kills people in the middle of nowhere… I know you probably hate my posts, but please try to add more differentiation between the heroic deeds of the hero and the villainous deeds of the villains.
    The choreography comes across as excessively violent. More like a Chainsaw Massacre rather than something I would want my kids to see… I think everyone should be able to enjoy a blender movie.
    You should spend less time on the stabbings, more like an X-men movie. Maybe a little graphic, but no guts spilling out on the floor, ya-know. :)

  48. Another Fellow Says:

    Luis, she only kills one guy this time around…

    This already had the epic shots and everything. Totally found it awesome when she grabbed her knife!

  49. Consideringthepickle Says:

    Amazing animation work! (and direction!) This is really impressive stuff.
    Is there going to be any music in this scene?

  50. Arafax Says:

    Man, reading the comments – everyone’s a director now :P

    Excellent pacing and camera, some of the action has a very Peter Jackson-style to it.

    Starting right into the action isn’t a story problem at all and giving her all the “logical” props like bags doesn’t really serve any purpose.

    To me this read very clearly as “Sintel is very exhausted, lost and with her last power overcomes an ambush and then breaks down fighting to get to the hut she sees in the distance”.

    Displaying violence is not unnecessary when you show a fight for life and death. It makes the action have more of an impact.

    Sintel team, I really like where you are taking this!

  51. LetsAllPretend Says:

    Now *that’s* looking cool!

    The scene feels stronger and more intense.

    Maybe you could find Sintel a warm sweater? :)

    Good luck Durian Team!

  52. matt Says:

    I miss the baddie being pitched over the cliff but that’s just my evil sense of humour :) Excellent stuff, I can’t wait for the next update.

  53. blenderman345 Says:

    See, I watched Elephants Dream, and it’s story didn’t flow for me, but as a portfolio, sort of, of what Blender can do, it was ok. Animation wasn’t very fluid, but it was ok.
    I saw Big Buck Bunny, and I was blown out of the solar system. Animation was fluid, story was amazing [Thanks Sacha... watched it again this morning.. hadn't seen it for a while.]
    This one is definitely is even more promising then BBB. I’m pretty sure a LOT of my friends would LOVE this one. The fighting was AMAZING. Lee: KUDOS, Keep up the good work man. So many aspire to animate like that. I just can’t wait at ALL to see this rendered. I wish I had the money to get that DVD……. It’s amazing how much better Blender gets every year.

    Now that the first minute for Sintel’s wrapped up, you know what I’m excited about?

    Mango.
    Blender already does amazing special effects. After Mango though………

  54. loopDuplicate Says:

    Who’s laughing at 1:15? Listen in the background behind Sintel breathing heavily. Is that the cameo?

  55. Emili Sancha Says:

    My two cents..
    Intro fly scene is too rectilineal and boring…make some curves ;) like a dragon fly ;)
    A corset in a 15 y.o. fighter girl is ridicolous apart it is from s. XVIII and tank top is from s. XX !!!
    Some cold place needs some warm robe ;)
    0:58 – 1:06 Guardian loose moustache. Is the same guardian?
    1:10 – 1:16 Too long plane. Make it short or zoom out and pan to panoramic view.
    1:21 – 1:23 I think is a too close plane, maybe a general plane works well
    Where is hit or damaged Sintel because fall over snow?

    Sorry for my english

  56. eTo Says:

    I agree with Gandalf. That stab in shoulder (even if hit stops on blade-bone) should have some more influence on him. Just a bit more (after he pushes of Sintel and before he takes out blade).
    However humans with help of adrenaline and in shock can do amazing things (I heard that mother picked up car to help her child). But still he should shake(make little steps or something like that) on sides bit more before pulling out blade (imo that puling out would give him another dose of shock, so after that he could attack her just like he did in this vid)
    Anyway, this doesn’t chang fact, that this animation is very good (even if i personally more liked previous first minute ;] )

  57. alalo Says:

    I like the “cheerful guardians in credits” idea :)

  58. DudeFromKansas Says:

    Awwww, Too bad for the rest of the gaurdians. This scene quite honestly makes more sense. If you outnumbered someone you most likely wouldn’t go one on one. Looks good! can’t wait to see the renders :)

  59. Anonymous Says:

    WTF 480×210

    LARGER VIDEO PLZ.

  60. Joooo Says:

    I don’t like that the Sintel titles is shown after the fight. I’d prefer a longer fly though the mountains with an earlier title, maybe you could reconsider this…
    By they way, many of Sintels animations look great yet :-)

    I can already hardly await to see more of the project, keep it going.

  61. Zachary Smith Says:

    Hey, Looks good. I can’t wait for this. I agree w/ previous comments about the knife in the shoulder thing. Maybe don’t have it go so deep, and it gets stuck some other way. Is he wearing armor? that might make it more believable, like it didn’t pierce too deep. I’m not a director though, and that’s just my opinion.

  62. Zachary Smith Says:

    Also, is the cameo frankie’s laugh @ 1:15? didn’t notice it until loopDuplicate mentioned it.

  63. Anon Says:

    Poor Sintel, she doesn’t even get a coat? That’s harsh, guys :P

  64. rayman Says:

    I would like to see the layout version to compare. That would be interesting, (by that I mean cool lol), to see how the different phases get refined, on the DVD at least.
    I would definitely like to see some animation to Sintel’s breathing at the end of the fight, and LOL at cameo laugh. I think I heard that as well.
    Otherwise AMAZING…

  65. jan Says:

    Note to self: Throw that vulture out and replace it with something else. Hey, it was a try.

  66. Luis Felipe Says:

    @Another Fellow, yes my bad realized it is only one person not two. Got confused as at the very end the guard’s torso was in green, just got confused.

    I COMPLETELY agree with D.C on this one. It maybe is a bit too violent, why would she just grab the knife and try to kill the man without even asking an explenation as to why she was attacked in the first place? The easiest way to solve this is by putting yourself in Sintel’s feet.

    You’re walking to a place and suddenly you get attacked. If she is that courageous to try and kill the man the yes she would try to defend herself but at the same time i think anyone would want an explenation, you don’t just randomly kill someone because you’re attacked. If there is no dialogue, the i believe the stabbing is unecessary, she could just as easily do a flip in slow motion above the guy and push him off with her feet in the air. That would look way cooler and show heroicness in her attitude. As D.C said, as viewers, have to have a reason to love Sintel, no one wants a hero who kills merciless.

    She could find other ways to get rid of this character, such as tying him up and leaving hom to die in the bitter cold, a fair punishment for having attacked her, the killing at this moment doesn’t add nor take away from the storyline in my opinion.

    Also another thing i noticed is that in the first 30 seconds we see Sintel, yet we dont really have a clue where she has come from. Just by looking at this, it looks as if she has just climbed the cliff to start walking, otherwise i don’t know how she got there.

    Anyway I hope in a sense that all these feedback help improve, in no way do i want to spoil any moods of people or sound like a bad person, i’m just giving personal feedback on what i thought. I’m almost sure that you guys have most likely planned this whole thing out well and made it so that this is just cliff hanger so we want to know more. over the 8 mins of film i uess we will learn more abt Sintel and why she’s done this in the beginning.

  67. Philip Says:

    Note to Sintel team:

    Don’t listen to us, for the most part. Work with Colin to make the film *you* want to make. Many people won’t be happy with what you do no matter what, so don’t try to please us. If we give you good suggestions or ideas, great, but otherwise just make *your* film. If you just do that, it will naturally be better. You guys know what you are doing. Just go all out. :-)

  68. Dylan McCall Says:

    Some people really have trouble suspending their disbelief. Don’t we have enough “realism” in the real world already? Stop trying to inject it into fantasy :b

    As for the sudden collapse at the end, I’m picking up that Sintel doesn’t fully recognize the injury she receives at first, but once the dust is settled it all becomes clear (and painful). If that’s the case, I hope the final shot includes her recognizing that fact, maybe before she stands back up…

  69. Frederick D Says:

    can we have the .blend to play around with?

  70. ITrAB Says:

    Awesome work ;)
    Needs some improvements, but it’s in good way!

  71. chimeric_idol Says:

    Looking amazing!!! Great stuff! The only thing I would say is that there is a wrong cut (i mean it looks akward) from 1:09 to 1:10. The camera in the Close-up probably should stay on the same side as in the previous Medium shot. Now it just feels as a jump and looks a bit confusing for the viewer… at least for me :)

    Great job anyway! Cant wait

  72. MTracer Says:

    Just some thoughts:

    Are the first two shots layout, or just the first one? ’cause the second shot doesn’t look to hot either, not a huge problem, it just looks like she’s floating, and not actually moving her legs.

    45 That girl squeal is kinda strange, I’d recommend against it.

    52-58 Is kinda nauseating, the camera flies around too much and I can’t tell what’s going on, had to watch it again.

    And lastly: There will be music, right? Sorry if I missed that, but this shot NEEDS music.

    Don’t worry, it’s still epic,

    MTracer.

  73. yoff Says:

    Overall _much_ more convincing than before. Timing is excellent in places and nowhere bad. Much thought and fluidity in the actions here, good job.

    Detailed comments below, as always these are just observations, take what you feel useful :-)

    0:18-0:24 – are we supposed to see the guardian here?
    0:24-0:34 – I feel she should huddle more from the cold, but I guess facials are not done yet…
    0:34-0:41 – love it! Great sense of drama and danger.
    0:41-0:49 – this works well, Jan’s sound work is awesome.
    0:49-0:50 – very convincing! The double take just feels right.
    0:50-0:53 – it seems she is given too much time and space to get the knife out. Once she lets go with one hand the pole should slam in close to her neck. If she could get the space though (push off the cliff with her right foot?), the stab jump is great, good action lines!
    0:53-0:57 – his immediate reaction is good, and the confused close up adds to that. His later pulling out the knife has been mentioned, he should probably crumble for at least a moment.
    0:57-1:05 – I keep wondering why the guardian does not sense the danger/see the weapon. Maybe, if you could show that his vision was blurry from the earlier stab, this would be clear. The movements are fine, ggod power, although I am no sure how Sintel gets her left arm into the thrust.
    1:05-1:16 – I feel her head should be moving around 1:10 because her chest should be heaving.
    1:16-1:17 – this is when she notices the hut? Before she was just wandering aimlessly? I guess we will learn… :-)
    1:17-1:34 – I like the fact that the title comes here, since it makes it clear that the girl is Sintel. It becomes a character introduction as much as a movie introduction.

  74. Robo3Dguy Says:

    Epic! Good stuff guys ;)

  75. Achim Luebbeke Says:

    There’s nothing wrong with giving feedback, the team decides what it consider as appropriate anyway.
    @ Luis Felipe:
    I don’t see any chance for the girl to ask anything without the risk to be killed instantly. IMO, her fighting absolutely fits with the situation unfold in this piece of movie.
    @ D.C.:
    When speaking about kids and violence, you should define the age of the kids.
    Because even stories like that of Pinocchio and many fairy tales are way too frightening for certain ages.
    The project “Durian” is “Targeted at adolescents” – I don’t see why this scene should be unappropriate to them. Don’t they see and read stories like Treasure Island or The Leatherstocking Tales?

  76. melon Says:

    Ok, why have he attacked her? I doubt any sexual motives in such a heavy winter. Mysterious! Well, anyway… he committed rag-doll at the end… :)

    Good work, by the way!

  77. Sverro Says:

    Wow it’s much better than the previous ‘first minute’!
    I really like the animation :D . Really good.

  78. Clayton Walker Says:

    Aww, less epic fight scene. Cut the rest of the guardians right out of the scene? O.o

  79. Niko40 Says:

    Nothing in this world is perfect. But this looks awesome so far. :D

    I agree what Philip and Dylan McCall said. Make it yours and try not to please every single person. So, I say to balance out what you want and what the community wants.

    I personally have nothing against violence. I agree with some people that the dagger goes a bit too deep to be able to just pull if off like that but that doesn’t really bother me when it’s about fantasy. Makes the character only more badass. What you were after anyways I guess. ;)

    The falling in the end feels a bit out of place though. I didn’t see Sintel really being hit at any point nor did she seemed too exhausted at the beginning. Perhaps she was just sad for the kill. Waiting for proper facial animation to clear it out.

    One thing you could try is to leave the part where she picks up the staff. That part feels a bit unnecessary and removing it would leave the getting up part seem longer. But I’m really not sure about this.

    Before Sintel gets up she watches the building in the distance. I just completely missed the thing, until 4:Th time I watched this. Without it this whole thing seemed a bit pointless and Sintel truly lost. This just got a whole lot more content when I noticed it so you might want to make sure watchers notice it in the final render.

    And about the titles… When something is proudly presented, miracles are expected. Sintel-title would perhaps fit better in before the fight. For a trailer though, it’s perfect. For the film it feels quite cliché.

    Well this is what I think. But make it your film. It’s hard to write critique from unfinished clip. Some of the things can be misunderstood or left unnoticed by some people. And people can understand this in variety of ways too resulting in… Yeah… You perhaps know this already… :D

    Anyway. You guys are awesome. Keep it up. :D

  80. bigbad Says:

    People that say that the knife stab should have more impact have never dealt with a person that was high on drugs. Drugs were common back in the days. It’s just the last 100 years it’s been illegal. So if can imagine people that weight 50 kg and train everyday; then take REAL drugs. Well you got yourself a killing machine.

    Love the animation. Don’t change a thing unless you want too.

  81. Eric Says:

    i like this new layout! couple things:

    1.) removing 3 of the bandits makes Sintel look a lot weaker than she might be in order to confront a dragon/be chased through a marketplace, whatever comes up in the script. I think 2 is a better balance – it shows that she is martially skilled but doesn’t overdo it at the same time.

    2.) when the bandit is stabbed in the left arm, he uses his left arm pretty fluidly in the next few frames as he towers over sintel. I think that it should be apparent that he is hurt or at least pissed off by a knife wound in his shoulder…

  82. Ayetach Says:

    You can’t do the introduction justice if you completely remove 3 of the 4 guardians. You lose that impact that she really is worn out from all the fighting. With only one it gives me the impression that she just wears out a whole lot quicker.

  83. Another Fellow Says:

    About the stabbing. I think he stabs her back with the other arm, not the wounded one.

  84. Paulo Bardes Says:

    there are two black things floating in the screen during the title, and someone (Nathan) painted her eyes yellow in 0:57-1:02

    one word: EPIC

  85. SlightlyChaotic Says:

    I sure hope this doesn’t reduce the total amount of violence in the film.

  86. Riboshom Says:

    But…

    If the first (now the only) guardian in the movie died, who will make the bad guy?
    It’s an epic fantasy world, there need to be trained fighters to oppose the protagonist!

  87. Busaiku Says:

    I’m not sure of the advantages of having so many people commenting and complaining about the project. It’s cool to know you are listening to advices and comments, but at the same time I hope you won’t deviate too much from the idea you guys have for this project from the very beginning. For me, I’ll skip this videos (but not the other updates, cause they are too cool to miss), so I won’t ruin the surprise of the final version.

  88. Blendiac Says:

    Love it. It’s frantic, fast and overall visually clear. A couple of thoughs:

    1. I hadn’t got a feeling of where we were before the text came up. If you move the “Blender foundation Proudly Presents” from 0:05 to 0:11 people have more time to get immersed in the world after it starts. It’s also right where the landscape opens up, giving more of a feeling of grandeur to the Blender text. :)

    2. Animation on the shot where she looks behind her is beautiful, even now. :) Introduces the guardian nicely who lands the first blow with a pleasing feeling of force.

    3. Give the guardian a reason to miss at close range when he rams his pike towards her (and into the wall). Have her deflect the pike from the side with one of her hands or similar.

    4. LOVE the way when she grabs the pike he uses his strength to throw her back against the wall. Gives a feeling of him being stronger and more dangerous.

    5. It would have been clear to him she was reaching for the pike, yet he’s unprepared. He wouldn’t have been able to stop if he had lunged instead of walking at her though.

    6. Most importantly, there isn’t enough time for the viewer to see the guardian in the shot before he’s already stabbed. 1/2-1 second before the stab in that shot is all it needs to read much more clearly, especially if we see him lunging in that time.

    7. Nice introduction of the shaman hut.

    8. As mentioned above, give her a reason to collapse, such as a blow when he knocks her over that would warrant it.

    9. The final shot is a fabulous way to dramatically introduce the title and have it be obvious who this is about.

    Congratulations. You’ve really made this sequence shine to a whole. I’d be damn proud if I were any of you. I just hope we’ll see the other guardians in some form somewhere else (non story related), too!

  89. kenden Says:

    Much improved version.
    I like the “Bourne Identity” feeling to the fight scene -don’t ask, just react.
    I missing a few more emotions on her face when she was walking in the snow at the beginning, but the rest works for me already.
    Keep the updates on the first scene coming!

  90. Big Fan Says:

    I think the rest of the Sintel project should be abandoned because if we listen to all the expert cinematic advice we are never going to escape getting getting the first minute right.
    Elephants Dream had no script and ran out of time to make something coherent but this project is considering too much detail and runs the risk of stagnating while trying to satisfy a water tight prosecurors case.
    It doesnt have to all make scientific sense or explain itself to the viewer. This is story telling with artistic licence.
    Please stop showing progress and listening to community feedback and get on with making a movie to satisfy the team.

  91. Psy-Fi Says:

    LOL different eye colors in one scene! Nathan, you little…

  92. Meltdown Says:

    Quite good animation!

    BigFan: They know what to do.

  93. Bao Says:

    Happy Birthday Ton. Half a century!

  94. Paulo Bardes Says:

    happy birthday Ton!!!! as present I’ll buy one dvd in the e-shoop ^^

    Congratulations for all your work!

  95. telly Says:

    Much better pacing. Needs to be longer as opening scene. Assasin/fighter bad guy should be hidden and you should show bad guy over the shoulder or POV to build suspense before jump. I also want to have something more than a look from Sintel hinting about her motivation. Maybe a “Father” or “Mother” or some wierd language blessing or asking for forgiveness, everytime she kills someone.

  96. rogper Says:

    I actually would enjoy if the guardian would be indeed always visible(at some level) to the audience :)
    Reminds me of the Jaguar of Disney Tarzan, before he attacks Tarzan for the last time, his shown in a couple of scenes during a considerable amount of time and because he doesn’t move we hardly can see him if no one tells us that he is there :P

  97. Acolyte Says:

    I totally agree with the very in depth comments above regarding the animation direction. Oh, please don’t get rid of the guardians, having them in the end credits was a good idea, but I think someone else above mentioned using them in a cameo closeup while in the city. This would be a great way to include all the hard work and effort you have put forward on these characters and, a closeup of all three of them with good facial animation would really add to the overall depth and scale of the film. The more you can sneak in little 2 or 3 second shots with elements which are more complex, the larger Sintel’s world will feel and you will establish an overall sense of attention to detail that only exists in feature length animation. Please keep them in, even if only in a shot or two, and keep up the amazing work!

  98. nathan Says:

    Hey everyone.
    Thanks so much for all of your feedback, both critical and praising. It’s awesome to see how much everyone cares about this project.

    At this point, we need to focus on getting the movie done. There isn’t any time left to change the story or how scenes are laid out, and there’s certainly no time left to re-animate anything that’s already finished. So unfortunately we’re not in a position to utilize most of your critiques, even in the cases where we agree with them.

    But it’s really motivating to see all of your comments, even the critiques! It shows how much everyone is invested in this. So keep it coming. And thanks for all of your support. :-)

  99. Liraco Says:

    Shame to see things can’t be tweaked but I can understand because of time constraints. The only thing that really bugged me was the transition right before Sintel stabs the guy near the neck (I’d say people focused too much on the wrong thing. :P )

    I couldn’t tell if she pushed him, kicked him, but it actually looks as if she’s about to get crushed and the guardian just decides to pull her away, and as she continues to cling to the spear she receives enough pull to send her flying which she uses to stab the guy.

    It’s an odd transition but it all goes so fast most people probably won’t notice.

    Great work so far, glad to see it all coming together so well. I agree this is an improvement over the previous version.

    And yes, show us more if you’ve got a minute, but otherwise just focus on finishing! :D

  100. freen Says:

    A camel is a horse designed by a committee.

    The Durian team is not making Snakes on a Plane.

  101. kopi Says:

    Awesome! I like it! It’s much much better than the last one!

  102. Franco Barbeite Says:

    Hey, I just wandered on to this site doing searches on Blender. I think your animation is great!

    I’m not animation expert, but I have some notes that will hopefully be useful.

    1: You can tighten the rhythmic gap between the open credits and the attack for effect. Imagine: Blender Foundation presents, and we’re on the girl, and just as the audience expects the next credit, we get the attack. Credit beat, Credit beat, Attack beat. An easy fix is to bring the credits in later.

    2; Just before the girl is attacked, using a guardian POV could really amp up the tension without revealing the guardian yet. So you the fly in, insert the POV, and then cut to the of the guardian guy appearing in the BG, which would be sweet. POV shots are great for creating a sense of dread.

    3: Why doesn’t the guy come out from behind the rock? (he’s also visible in the first epic shot, which kind of undermines the isolation of it. Maybe take him out of that first shot so you can reveal him later with more impact?)

    3: When that staff goes flying during the fight, what if it almost stabs her on the way down? I was so worried it would land on her and impail her by accident. Adding that beat could be really exciting, and add a sense of chaos and realism to the fight.

    4: When that guy pulls the knife out of his body, there are really two dramatic beats there. 1; He pulls it out and she’s like “oh shit” and 2: he rushes her, and she’s like “Oh God!.” You can really milk those moments.
    All it would take are two reaction shots paced properly. So the shots are Guy pulls knife out of shoulder, girl reacts, guy attacks her, girl reacts.

    5: This is just a personal comment, not so much a craft comment, but when the guy pulls out that kife, having a spurt of blood fly out would be awesome. He looks at his wound, realizes he’s dying, and decides to take her with him. That’s sort of a character defining decision however, and he’s your character so that’s just a personal note of I might do that beat.

    Hope you found these comments useful. If you did and you’re doing any more scenes you’d like feedback on, feel free to contact me. I direct TV commercials and if I’m not out doing a spot, would be happy to help you guys out with any feedback you might find useful.

    Best,

    Franco Barbeite

  103. Achim Luebbeke Says:

    “freen Says:
    A camel is a horse designed by a committee.”
    You are mixing things up.
    Giving feedback doesn’t mean to decide anything.
    The team of Durian has its own cycles of discussions anyway.
    Consider it as an onion with skins of influences. What you see here is just the outer skin, not as close to the core of the decisions as the others.

  104. Greydesk Says:

    If you’re looking for a quick excuse for her collapse, you can move his falling had slightly towards her abdomen with the knife to wound her. Then, at 1:!0 her hand covers her abdomen, where she was wounded. In the long facial shot, cut to her moving her hand slightly to inspect the wound, then cut back as she lay back a few more moment, gathering her strength, and then continue as cut.
    At 1:19-23, you could have her vision blur momentarily to show her weakness again.
    I’m assuming she is using the staff later to hobble on?
    This is an awesome remake. The other three guardians, plot-wise, could have been earlier in her journey, adding to her fatigue. Better to string them out and lull her into a sense of security . . . she’s already beat the other three, how many can there be?

    Rod Naugler aka Statik aka Greydesk

  105. Rudiger Says:

    I had the same idea as Greydesk with regards to having the plot assume that she has fought with the other three guardians along the way. It would be quite a simple change to make the opening fly through the mountains actually follow the path that Sintel has taken to get where she is. That way you could show, at a distance, the bodies of the other three guardians she has left along the way. This would give a better set up for the opening fight sequence, as we have been given a glimpse into the long, arduous journey Sintel has been through and a reason why the guardian would really want to kill her and therefore make it more impactful.

  106. kram1032 Says:

    A great starter scene :)

    It’s just very confusing how the models, outfits and even EYES change, lol. You can cleary see, when that part with Sintel’s yellow eyes was done, based on the blog :D

  107. Victor Says:

    Oooh shut up! I mean people from above, It’s a fine animation. You’re not directing this movie, you know. The first cut is just layout, so they can hide the guardian or do something more interesting.

  108. Simon Says:

    Everyone’s an artist…

  109. Hoxolotl Says:

    I know you’re probably past the production stage where the following might interest you for inspiration:

    http://www.ted.com/talks/the_lxd_in_the_internet_age_dance_evolves.html

    Especially the animators might grap a move or two out of there :)

    These are the current “limits” of what a human body can do… I’m amazed.

  110. Will Says:

    I think this first minute was awesome. I like not knowing what’s really going on yet because then it makes me want to see the rest of the story. Way to draw me in.
    @Durian–I was watching “Kungfu Panda” the other day and when it was over, I watched the credits. The sheer number of artists that were used for that production only causes me to respect thee Durian team even more. You are doing very professional work with a small team. Impressive. Blessings.

  111. Ovidiu Says:

    > jan Says: March 19th, 2010 at 20:51
    > Note to self: Throw that vulture out and replace it with
    > something else. Hey, it was a try.
    I was wondering what are those helicopters doing there! LOL

    may a make a small suggestion? … this was also raises several times before: it is unrealistic that a 15 years old will defeat an experienced guardian so fast. I believe a better approach will be to make her win by chance, make her lucky or make him made a fatal mistake or something. Somehow she must preserve her innocence (to some extend) and not turn her in a body killer. Guardian falling on te spear is good but far from original: this is quite common and present in a lot of movies… even the Mammoth from 10.000bc did that:

    - starting from min 1:40 on http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wt2NeMxhOfo

  112. jdcooke2010 Says:

    Hey guys great work! I love the fight scene. Two things however,…. :)

    -In scene “Camera 5.8 N” the guard moving from right to left confuses the relationship between the two fighters. You have a straight on shot of the girl which heightens the tension then a “right to left” movement of the guard which slightly defuses that tension.

    - Scene “Camera 5.8 U” might need the girl in the foreground to establish the relationship between where she is and where she’s headed. Or, a hand held camera can work by making the audience “look” through her eyes.

    Other than that it looks great! Love what you’re doing

    take care

  113. Reyn Says:

    So far, the direction is awesome! Keep it up. These updates keep us wanting more, haha! ^_^

    -Reyn

  114. yman Says:

    Somehow I get the feeling you are heavily inspired by Disney’s movie Aladdin.

  115. yman Says:

    0:47 – The dude aims the spear for her head. It would make more sense for him to aim at her torso, since it makes a bigger target and is harder to get out of the way. Less flashy, but would seem more realistic to me.

    0:51 – He’s crushing her throat. What reason could he possibly have for tossing her aside when he has such an advantage?

    1:03 – He should have seen that one coming from a mile away, no?

    I guess the efficiency of his movements in his initial attack shows he does not have much skill. His aim is always high, making it easy to dodge his swings. He also seems to run and swing pretty slowly, even considering the the snow. Guess he’s just an unskilled grunt.

  116. yman Says:

    @D.C. and @Luis Felipe:
    If I understand correctly, Sintel is ordinary street trash, not an intellectual living a cushioned life outside the real world. As such, she should understand better than anybody that if she is targeted by someone who means business, she’ll definitely die if she holds back. Under the circumstances of someone seriously trying to kill her out of the blue, the most sensible thing, and the moral thing as well, is to kill him. The stupidest thing she could do is deliberately miss a chance to hurt him.

    And I absolutely love the lack of dialog. Putting a dialog in this will make it feel cheesy, unrealistic, and generic. Less is more.

  117. yman Says:

    Sintel’s collapse makes sense. She was just attacked and had to fight for her life. Now that it’s over, she feels drained of energy and needs to kick back and take a breather before going on.

  118. Matt Says:

    That would be Ton as the guard, yes? Excellent casting :-)

  119. joeri67 Says:

    Lol.

  120. Ben Hubel Says:

    The removal of the guardians does sadden me, but there is no reason to think the hard work on them has gone to waste. Being that the source files are being released, they can be used in other peoples projects. Perhaps somebody might even make a a movie related to Sintel.
    Also, just because the Durian team does not have time to implement these suggestions, this does not mean that people are unable to make an updated version or something like that. This is the beauty of open movies. If anybody wants to take the time to do so, they can make a more realistic version.

  121. Lamhaidh Says:

    One of my favourite parts of a pixar film is always the “bloopers” they invent for the credits, like in Mosters Inc when the floor’s too waxy, or the joke about how the guy who did ham’s/school of fish/mac’s voice had the part at the end of Cars where he complains about how they always get the same voice actor.

    My Point? What about having an end credits section where the 3 missing Guardians keep messing up and sintel has a winge then Ton storms on and fires them?

  122. Tim Says:

    So is that Ton grunting in the soundscape?

  123. Martin Says:

    You can have the other guys lying dead in the snow! That way, at least they get used. And it shows that the fight is an epic one.

  124. Anonymous Says:

    love it. much better than the 1st. Smoother though i do agree on the dark spots that run across the screen.

    geez, please! is it realistic to wave a twig and chase away shadows?…tell Harry Potter it isnt realistic…or that suspended huge eye in LOR. An eye seeking one little gold ring that holds the fate of an entire world…shall I go one?

    you need to know what FANTASY is

    maybe Sintel fell into the same couldron of secret potion that Obelix the Gaul(of Asterix). Sometimes you just gotta let go and go with the story. Maybe she’s a descendant of very strong child-warriors. Do you know that there are child soldiers who handle AK-47s? Not that I support that kind of crime, but I intend to bring to light how a a young body can be conditioned to physical activity.

    as for violence, this is BBB

  125. Anonymous Says:

    I meant to say, this isnt BBB

  126. Wray Bowling Says:

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY TON

  127. Lamhaidh Says:

    As for violence, BBB was worse than any pixar I’ve ever seen and I loved it! If Sintel is supposed to be an action film we can rule out the under 15s can’t we?

  128. Magic_Man_3d Says:

    We all know that there is going to be some violence. Don’t like the fact that there is going to be violence? I say get over it. If you think that there might be too much violence you have not seen anything in the real world or any other movie that wasn’t rated pg.

  129. Another Fellow Says:

    I think she was already wounded. Her clothes look torn…

  130. Jan - 2 Says:

    Ton, Happy Birthday. We are so glad you were born. This world is so much more special with your existance. So many of us have been helped with you caring to create Blender. Thank you. I hope you took time to celebrate.

  131. nathan Says:

    @Magic_Man_3d:
    I also disagree with the objections to the violence in Sintel. However, I seriously doubt those objections are based in ignorance of the “real world” or entertainment media. I’m sure the people objecting are well aware these things.

    And saying (effectively) “everyone does it” really isn’t a sound argument on its own.

  132. greyshirtguy Says:

    Wow! – that worked for me….I liked it all.

    Joooo: For what it’s worth, I really liked the delayed title….It just seemed to fit there “real nice” (well, to me anyway)

    And I don’t mind the “un-answered questions” feeling I got at the start….
    “why is she attacked for seemingly no good reason?” – “why did she kill her attacker without any second thought or dialog?” “where is she?”, “what is she doing there” “what is he doing there?” etc etc

    It reminds me of a lot of films/storys where early story events become more clearly understood by stuff that is revealed later – That is, more of the complete story is revealed later and you get those “ah ha” moments as you mentally fill in the gaps and connect-the-dots…I think that style works well for this short…

  133. jin Says:

    GREAT!!! one small comment-

    the spear was NOT going to hit her. why was the guy aiming for the wall next to her?

    kinda reminds me of sword fighting as a kid where you didn’t understand the goal was to try to hit the other person’s body – not to hit the other person’s sword!

    the spear thrust should’ve had lethal intent and the only reason she’s not a shishkebab is because she GETS OUT OF THE WAY.

    this will also make the lethality of her actions “excusable” in dramatic terms – he was indeed going to kill her.

  134. Matheus Tófolli Says:

    Really, I’m loving it! She is so sexy :D

  135. dyego Says:

    The best think I have ever saw, it is going to be great!!

  136. leg nerve Says:

    Hello, I like your publish. I wish everyone would pay such attention to their article as you do. I came acros your blog on yahoo when looking out for a compartment. I will arrive back for your blog. I am sorry for my poor englisch, i am in the netherlands. Best regards in the netherlands!

  137. Knife Says:

    This is looking really good, keep up the good work.

  138. Dojo Village Idiot Says:

    Your in no way to old to begin your Martial Arts Training, on the other hand you do have to bear in mind at our age our body takes longer to recover.

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