Submarine D1 1937

Visual effects by Byron Haskin and  Hans F (Fred) Koenekamp.

Some of the torpedo shots for this film got used on many a black and white Warner Brothers film over the years.

Unfortunately the only copy I could locate is a bit murky, a digital version from a VHS TV taping.


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Cape Fear 1991

This remake by Martin Scorsese features some very realistic miniature house boat effects supervised by Derek Meddings.

The miniature eventually disintegrates in a storm lashed river in a very effective manner. As the model is smashed and stripped during its destruction, there is a fidelity apparent in the materials and the method of construction  used in the model matching a full sized house boat very convincingly

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Botany Bay 1953

This film can be found in its entirety on You tube. The quality of the pictures is not the greatest, the source looks to be digitised from a VHS recording off TV.

There are some pretty decent model ship effects supervised by Paramount studios’ photographic effects chief Gordon Jennings, however the scenes set in Australia are pretty un-convincing with a couple of Koalas in a tree in a studio set.

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K19 The Widowmaker 2002

Most of the Submarine action in this film appears to be Computer Generated but there was a model built and photographed for the sequence where the K19 submarine surfaces rapidly breaking through an ice sheet. In fact a part of the extra features on the DVD, looks at the visual effects and covers the model shoot, entirely neglecting the much larger digital portion of the effects work. Lets face it models are inherently more interesting to look at than a couple of people pointing at a computer screen.

Even so there is not very much of the model left on the screen in the actual movie after the digital team has covered it in particle effects snow and ice.

The miniature effects were produced by Mill Film.

UPDATE 14/04/2015

I have just stumbled across an old Cinesite miniatures reel that, among other things, clearly shows the model being shot motion control for the underwater shots as well as a surface aerial shot.


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