(550 inflatable mannequins getting prepared for a scene in the movie Angels & Demons)
Over the course of time, science and technology have progressed quite a lot and we can see its effects in most of the practical fields. Pick up any field and you’ll be amazed at how much it has benefited from the advancements in science and technology. However, often these improvements are too expensive; for example, let’s talk about Computer Generated Imagery a.k.a. CGI. It looks very impressive but at the same time it is quite expensive. What to do in such scenarios?
Let’s be more particular, say you are filming a movie and need to portray a large crowd in your movie. What would you do? Employ the use of CGI and use up your resources? Or will you hire extras and spend the next few days trying to make them understand what the scene requires and how they are screwing it up? Not to mention that hiring such a large number of extras will cost you quite dearly too.
This is what led to the creation of The Inflatable Crowd Company. They started working about 11 years back in 2002 when Hollywood movie; Sea Biscuit required a crowd of thirty thousand to be shown on the big screen. How did they manage? They came up with an alternative to CGI and extras; mannequins. Mannequins who are made of plastic, inflatable and can be made to look like a real crowd.
After the success in the first project, this idea has been employed in a number of movies which include Spiderman 3, The King’s Speech and American Gangster. Apart from being used in around 80 movies, these plastic males and females have become the stars of a number of TV shows and commercials as well. These mannequins are first inflated, then dressed and then faces are fitted upon them. Add some lightning and quality camera work and these not-so-real-mannequins look real enough on the screen.
(Movie We Are Marshall with 2,400 Inflatables.)(Movie Cinderella Man with 11,000 Inflatables.)(Movie The Changeling with 400 Inflatables.)(Movie Glory Road with 4,000 Inflatables.)