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admin 02.04.2015

May 5: Henry Cavill, Superman in the 2013 Man of Steel movie, born in Jersey, Channel Islands in 1983. May 8: Salome Jens, Martha Kent in the Superboy TV series, born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in 1935.
May 11: Gerard Christopher, the second actor to play the lead role in the Superboy TV series, born in New York City, New York in 1959. May 21: Joan Alexander, best known as Lois Lane from the 1940s Superman Radio Series, dies in 2009, aged 94. May 27: Richard Schiff, Emil Hamilton in the 2013 Man of Steel movie, born in Bethesda, Maryland in 1955.
Google Ads are only seen by non-members of RMweb - Create an RMweb account and you'll only receive modelling ads. A  version of this though with only one low level siding and a simpler terminus appeared as a very well described blow by blow project layout in TT-3 by Mike Bryant in MRC during the first half of 1958 under the title "Large Quart in a Pint Pot" . I've seen a 6ft x 4ft version with a scenic break between the terminus and the low level section and it does pack a lot of operation into a small space. The clearance between the high level terminus board and the main board is the critical one but in this version there is no trackwork above the point at the back of the loop which should make maintenance easier.
I did once try designing Pint Pot with Hornby's layout planning software and, following a train with the onboard camera you do get a pretty long run before you return to the terminus without going round and round the loop.
And there was I thinking what did people have against a Great Western Railway Bacon Lettuce and Tomato. On Mike Bryant's TT-3 layout the points were operated by GEM hand levers and, though the terminal strip was behind the throat of the terminus, I've no idea which side he normally operated from. As a member of the Gauge 1 Society, he took us both to Central Hall and I had a turn operating on the large Gauge 1 layout that ran most years at that show.
The one thing that is missing (perhaps it is there but hidden under the terminus) is a passing loop. For that reason the layout does deserve a bigger board and any attempt to shoe-horn it into a smaller space just is not doing it justice. I went to my dad's place today, and we stumbled upon this amazing model train set in the apartment below his. It would be awesome to come to an interview, lay this briefcase on the desk and…POW!  Fun times with the conductor.
Neither the service provider nor the domain owner maintain any relationship with the advertisers. Never made the cotton reel locos because I didn't want to cut the page up and didn't have an easy way to copy it. His version was 4x2 using GEM flexible track (4ft 4 ins by 2ft 3ins using the original Triang track) which would work out at about 5ft 6ins x 2ft 9ins in 00 or H0. Compared with the 6x3 version the gradient is a bit more reasonable, the terminus is a sensible length (almost any of the tiny BLTs would fit) and the lower yard will comfortably take a second siding. It's absolutely esssential for the operators of such a layout to be well nourished as it's very difficult to coordinate reversing the controller with throwing the DPDT switch that supplies the return loop   Stopping the train is for wimps! I'd hazard a guess that at exhibitions the operator was mostly behind the terminus with the public looking from the low level side as you'd have to have access to the local lever for the hidden point. It is these that allow operation of a roundy-roundy (watch the trains go by) and the simple terminus out and back - not forgetting the sidings for a bit of shunting. The addition of a passing loop (relatively simple) would allow the potential of two trains - one out and into the loop releasing another to return (from hidden). Why do we have to subject good plans to this treatment - it is just like we always seem to want to cram more track in regardless of practicality. The ready-to-run route passes over the mountain and winds under the mountain tunnel system. In case of trademark issues please contact the domain owner directly (contact information can be found in whois). Please enable JavaScript on your Web browser to properly view this Web site, or upgrade to a Web browser that does support JavaScript; Firefox, Safari, Opera, Chrome or a version of Internet Explorer newer then version 6. For me the importance of keeping the upper level terminus as straight along the back is also important. This is where we put a lot of concept art up on the walls, discuss ideas, and sometimes Bryan comes up, likes the stuff, sometimes he comes up and doesn't like the stuff.
So, I'll run through everything and try and explain what there is here, that you're looking at. So start over here - some of these computer drawings are really some of the early conceptuals that show what Superman's pod looks like.
Modernize a lot of the ideas, but hold on to some of the really nice aspects of the original films. And as Bryan will tell you in his own words, this film can be seen for the first time by someone who hasn't experienced one of the Christopher Reeve films, and enjoyed, but also hopefully looked at by people who've seen the first, and certainly the second film, and want to consider this to be the ideal third film in the series. Superman has to go on a journey at a certain point, so one of the things that we've done with the crystal technology in this film, which they couldn't do back in 1976, is look at the crystal technology of his Fortress of Solitude and any vehicles he may have, as in this case a pod that he rides around in, and actually grow the crystals. Only this time it's a bit like stop-motion animation, so we're developing methods of actually seeing the crystals grow at a very advanced speed. It's quite an exciting thing, and I think it brings another dimension to the whole Kryptonian technology.
So, moving on - these are some concepts for the Kent Farm, and you can see, actually, this is the exterior of the ship. Moving around, you'll see some key images which show some of the action sequences that we have in the film. A lot of the images are photoshop generated, for example the sequence of three drawings there which show the 777 plummeting. They're all actually done with Photoshop, which is scanned images that exist, and then painted over the top. That includes everyone from props to set decoration, right in through conceptualizing, through the set building, the whole lot.
As a lot of you remember, we went on a tour and saw all of the sets pretty much all at the same time, and we could leave a lot of those sets standing. So, we could go and shoot things, and if there were things that were not quite right, we could just go back and reshoot them. For example, at one point we actually turned the woodwork shop into a stage because we just ran out of room. And the idea is that as part of the film, we're taken on a mission, and we see a shuttle being launched on the back of a 777. As you know when shuttles take off, they normally take off with these enormous rockets which contain lots of fuel. Uh, so, moving around to some of the artwork - one of the intriguing characters in the film, look at those orange images at the end there by Joe. She basically is about to pass away, and leaves a lot of money to a certain individual, who then is funded in order to do whatever he needs to do.
Next to it you'll see there are some comparison images - three in a row, top to bottom - which show how we're taking locations here in Sydney. And if you look immediately below it you'll see the photoshop illustration of how we're going to take that image and in CG convert that into basically our Metropolis look.
It's a modern day film, but rather like New York or Chicago, it does have a great sense of history.
We felt it was important, not only because of Superman roots, when he was created, and some of those very early comic books where you see the classic stacked skyscrapers that you see in New York, we thought it would be nice to have a feeling of that, and see all the water towers.
But also, I think, when you're trying to create a city, you've got to give it a sense of history, otherwise people just don't believe it. Sydney's a lovely city, but my first reaction when I got off the plane was "Oh my god, all the brits moved to San Diego and built things." It's very beautiful, small-scale British architecture built in yellow sandstone. So obviously a lot of the locations we picked out here, there are several you'll see if you just jump over a couple of images, you'll see at the bottom, this image here, this is actually a location you may pass downtown and this is again a photoshop image of what we intend to turn that building into - the hospital.
We would shoot - again I have some pictures of this which I'll show you - we would dress this as to whatever the building was, and certainly for anything close we can shoot on the location. We don't have to do any computer graphics work, so we get probably 90% of our scenes done on location.
But for any establishing shots, or anything particularly wide, we start to show the Sydney Opera House in the background. It's funny - when it comes to naming things now it's becoming increasingly difficult to name things because there's a lot of problems with litigation in films, and people suing for use of number plates and uses of names. I mean, we have a graphic design team on this film of five people who basically designed everything, as I said, from cereal boxes to number plates, basically making subtle changes in order for us to get around litigation and being sued for using number plates and whatever it happens to be.


I watched them just continuously for a long time, and John - John Barry was the designer on the first film, and there were certain things that I felt, personally, had such an iconic image to the general public, things people will remember.
For example, the Fortress of Solitude - it's very difficult to go in and say "Okay, I'm just gonna completely redesign the Fortress of Solitude and make it into something else," because I think you'll probably upset a lot of people, and you may also take them out of the story.
Bryan's story relies heavily on a lot of people already knowing what the Fortress of Solitude is, so it's important from a storytelling point of view that some of the things in the designs have to stay the same.
We started from scratch and designed the Daily Planet the way I think it should have been designed the first time. They perhaps didn't have the time, didn't have the money, perhaps they didn't want to spend their money on that. I don't know what the situation was with Richard's film, but certainly this time around it was very important for the Daily Planet to be a complete entity unto itself with a history.
We designed everything in the Daily Planet from Lois Lane's business cards, we had an internal office telephone list, which everybody had. It was a big challenge, again, talking about boring stuff like copyrights, you can imagine that. I had a lot of sleepless nights trying to worry about how some of the old scenic techniques wouldn't work now with this new digital camera that Tom Sigel and Bryan are using. That really pushed the idea of the detail, and if you REALLY look in the background of some of the frames you'll see all sorts of crazy details which allude to the DC world. We've got phone books from Gotham, and there's a clock in Perry's office that actually says the time in Gotham. She is the wife of of a huge shipping magnate who made his fortune in ship building, and all sorts of big, big stuff, and as a result he built her this absolutely extravagant yacht.
This is a 300 foot yacht called "The Gertrude." You're going to go and stand on the back of it on Stage 3.
One of the most interesting things about "The Gertrude" is the fact that it actually has a glass bottom. It's not just a design statement, it actually was a request from Bryan for a story point in the film. Obviously I didn't get a very kind response from Warner Brothers when I went to them and said, "Look, I wanna built this 300 foot yacht. Can we do that out here?" "No, you're not gonna do that." We ended up having to build portions of the yacht to tell the story, and in the art department we built a 3d model of this using Rhinoceros, a program, and that will be passed off to the various effects houses to render up. So, any wide shots you see of the yacht obviously will all be CG, but we have built some pretty large portions of this yacht.
We built all of this on stage 3, and you'll actually be able to look at our jacuzzi, and go in and see the gym that's just underneath there. We've also built, obviously, the bridge, and various other compartments, huge corridors inside this yacht.
We found a helicopter here that was completely destroyed and refurbished it, and you can see part of it still outside. What have you done to the Harbour Bridge? Guy: Yeah, I'd prefer not to talk about that actually. Some of the projects are just ideas that we throw out there, some of them are actual things that we do. There was some talk about creating a bridge that we could actually utilize parts of Sydney Harbour Bridge as a location, in other words a corner of it here, and then pulling back and using something that perhaps married together parts of the Brooklyn Bridge to give it that sort of a New York feel. Bryan basically came to me one day and said - actually I think he called me really late at night - and said "Guy, you've gotta build me a huge train set.
The biggest one you've ever seen!" So, we got in touch with a German company called Märklin who specialize in beautiful, detailed model train sets. We were able to get sponsorship from them, and then proceeded to build this absolutely enormous train set.
We had about three different scales to this train set, so as you looked at it from the front, all the trains in the front - which actually had little steam coming from them and little engine noises and things - they would all be much bigger, and obviously the further back you went the smaller they got. We had someone sculpt up a mini Mount Rushmore as a tribute to Eva Marie Saint, so we put that in there.
We had a little Smallville station, and a little Kent Farm, and all sorts of things going on in there. So you'll get to see the aftermath of that. Right behind you there, chaps, is the surface of Krypton. Now, the image at the top left-hand side there shows a pretty crisp sort of surface, and that's how you'll be introduced to the planet. You slowly reveal that actually what you're on, it's not a complete planet, but just a shell. Obviously, needless to say, that deadly green stuff under there doesn't make our hero feel too well. These images in the middle here, this is the exterior of that crystal space craft that I talked to you about over there, when you were looking at the interior.
I think some of the unique features about this, as I say, it's a ship that actually grows itself, it's completely transparent, has a beautiful sort of glowing aura to it.
I tried to work with that design, but if any of you guys go back that's the one thing in the first film that really looks hokey. We tried to treat it, instead of just being a ball with spikes on it, as though it is actually a crystal that has grown. We'll probably end up doing umpteen sections of the Fortress to explain how this crystal structure actually stands up because it's a difficult thing to explain. Q: Besides Alex Ross' art, how much is being taken from actual comics? I think definitely in the story there are lots of little nuggets that are taken from the folklore of Superman. From a design standpoint, because the story was very specific, and I decided together with Bryan that we were going to go this contemporary with a very slightly retro feel, I think everything sort of took care of itself. We knew that the Fortress of Solitude had to at least allude to the original design, and we knew that the city had to be something between Chicago and New York, but not. There was a discussion that Bryan and I had about the destruction, and as he'll explain to you, he'll argue that the thing we can bring to the crystal technology that they never were able to in 78, is that, because of CG, we've enhanced the idea that the crystals actually grow. It's a living organism, it's actually a thinking organism, and the crystals that are used in the console in the Fortress of Solitude are more like seeds. There are things that actually enable - chemically - these crystals to grow, and they're engrained with a pattern, or an architectural plan for something, and it basically recreates itself.
I think that the film is already so jam-packed with stuff, they just couldn't squeeze it in. What was the inspiration for the Superman costume? Guy: Well the costume isn't really my area.
Bryan was concerned that if we went too comical with Lex it would just take away all of the fear of his character, and obviously Kevin Spacey's pretty scary.
He comes in my office and says, "Hey, you got anything for me?" and I'm just, "Yeah, take whatever you want! What you're looking at here are actually a day and a night backing, these are obviously very small, and these are the backings that I created for the Daily Planet itself. When you have a set like that, obviously you have to make this huge trans-light that goes all the way around so when you look through the windows - you guys know all this, I know - you're not looking out at a green screen.
The actors spend a lot of time at the Daily Planet, and I wanted to go a little bit old school and make them feel like they were really there, you know, 68 stories up in this beautiful old building. So we created these backings that were absolutely fantastic, and obviously - I'm always trying to do this - Shuster had to put it in there. There was a TV store in the film, and we absolutely wanted to use that name, and I just know that people love that stuff and appreciate it.
If you're going to call something something, you might as well call it something out of the folklore of the universe. But anyway, Shuster we could use, so there's a big glowing sign on the roof of the Suster Building.
This is the first sketch I did for the Daily Planet, which to me just encapsulates everything that I'd seen in all the years of development, all the drawings, all the inspiration for what the Daily Planet should be - just that very classic monolithic building.
We actualy built a rooftop, which was pretty spectacular, but the scale of the ball was absolutely huge. And obviously when we're shooting the rooftop, we put some interactive lighting up there with the moving letters.
Behind me are an array of illustrations and drawings which show the various architectural details.
This is the illustration that Bryan actually used to pitch Brandon to the studio as Superman. There was some concern, obviously as there always is, about a newcomer, and their abilities, and Bryan basically had us create an illustration of Brandon in his costume, and superimpose his head on.


This was part of the big pitch for Brandon, so that's kind of an important drawing for the film.
There were some interesting conversations about the kind of boots a guy of his power would need to actually launch himself at the speed he does, the support that he'd need in his heel.
As you move around there are more pictures of "The Gertrude" yacht, and on the right over there in the corner are just more pictures of the Fortress, of the set and the icy landscape. Obviously if we're trying to depict the midwest, you have to find some place that's pretty flat, and that's extremely difficult to find.
I went to great lengths to find this truck, and for those of you who remember the first film, you'll see this is almost an exact match for the original family truck that they find him in when he lands on Earth. That's an out of focus shot because I actually got this from the editors so it's low-res, but you can see how the farm is laid out here, and how it all works. I just finished "The Brothers Grimm" with Terry Gilliam when Bryan called me for this, so I have a lot of experience with building these sort of rural-type environments. This was a big sell, but basically I wanted to encourage Tom and Bryan to not only shoot the exteriors of the farm, but also the interiors on location so that whenever you looked out the window you got all the benefit of the work that had been done there. There's one shot in the Donner film, which you'll see, when he's actually walking up the driveway with his father, and the father's explaining "hey, you shouldn't show off son" and all that stuff.
There's a silhouette of the farm where you have the farm house on the right hand side of the road, and the barn on the left.
I stuck to that, in the sense that in the driveway, when you look up, the silhouette is the same from the road, from the mail box. I don't know if they ever actually used a shot from there, but if you had a shot from there it would look exactly the same.
There is a hidden trap door in the barn which leads to a cellar, and I couldn't dig that deep out there because I was going to knock the barn over. This is actually a look at the farm from a long, long way away, and you can see this is when we started to grow these acres and acres of corn. This really bizarre thing is the exterior of the interior of that pod, of the main spaceship that he travels around in. When you're shooting a film and you want to create an atmosphere with light, you use a gobo, which is basically just something you hang up in front of the light to give you some sort of reflective, interesting shape. I decided to build the crystal ship entirely out of gobos, so this is actually like a giant puppet.
There are actually thousands and thousands of ropes supporting single sheets of fiberglass here, and it's all lit internally.
The sun's going down, and there'll be moments where you go "man, why are we tearing this down?" But that's the job, so what can I do? I'm trying to build another set using the same scaffolding, that's the kind of money-saving guy I am.
Basically, that scaffolding originally supported this set, which was the entrance to the Daily Planet. I spent two weeks running around in New York with Bryan, when he first got the project, just looking at architecture. He was there with Dan and Mike writing the script in a hotel room, and every now and then he'd just pick me up and say "Let's go around and look at some buildings." So we would just go around, and he would pick out elements he really liked, and that's what we worked on. Alright, let me run through these really quick, then, seeing as I can't really take you inside. I hate that stuff, so we had to get the camera following them through the double doors and getting them out onto the street. It's funny, we had, as part of the whole newspaper thing, we had a bunch of these one-sheets done, which we had in all the corridors. We had things like "Lex Luthor gets life," and we've got Kevin Spacey in the photograph with his bald head. We actually recreated - I couldn't find them anywhere in the archives - all the original newspaper covers that we saw in the first films, like "Look Ma, it Flies!" We recreated all of those, and put them all down the corridor.
What I like about this is that hopefully it's attractive to look at, but it has a sense of practicality to it. There's Perry's office, and you'll notice the cabinet in the background, if you look really closely, it's the Daily Planet. We had a B-29 in the air with a little bomb hanging from it with a little "slim pickin's" on the back.
It's a very big budget film, but because we have a character that flies around a lot, and does a lot of things which you really can't do other than in CG, the computer graphics get a very, very large chunk of this budget. Because the sets are supposedly contemporary you just have to be really clever and inventive with how you spend your money. They usually do this great thing where they have the draft, they pretty much stick to it, there's usually a few scenes that come and go. He'll edit the script as he goes, and pages get rewritten, but there wasn't really anything as important as the Danger Room in the X-Men that got cut. You go into his ear, where you basically hear all the sounds around the world of people in trouble, and then he just "woosh" and off he goes. I know Bryan's made efforts, he's making efforts to make it a more international character. I hope that was some help. The Fortress of Solitude II From the design studio Guy walked us through 4 different sound stages on the Fox Studios' grounds. Sadly many of the more grandiose sets had already been pulled down by this point in time, so the ones we were shown (while still magnificent) weren't the best this movie has to offer.
There will be water pouring down the sides, and it's going to look fantastic when it's lit, but I can't really tell you what it is. Alright, let's move on. Lex Luthor's Train Set One set which was destroyed, but for a story purpose, was Lex Luthor's massive miniature train set. While we didn't get to see it in all its glory, we did get to see just how massive and detailed it had been (and hopefully that will come across on screen when we watch the movie). The staircase behind you is what we use to marry into the location, which was Gertrude's mansion.
We actually had duplicates of some of the train set pieces that were donated to us by Märklin.
A lot of the buildings we made ourselves, and made duplicates so that we could burn them up and destroy them in this way. I'd love to have shown you it with all the trains working and the zepplins running around, but at least you get a sense of it anyway. In reality the stage wasn't big enough, but there's actually another tier above this, further along which is the helipad.
Let's just say a party or something's been going on here, complete with towels with Gertrude's emblem on them. They had to cover themselves so they'd not necessarily have to shoot into green screen all of the time.
To me it's just the nuttiest thing in the world building the back end of a yacht on a stage.
We can reflect light into those and get some nice dancing shadows on the top when they're in more tropical waters.
That was all kept to very specific sets: The Kent Farm, the Daily Planet, things that are really rooted in the Superman world.
I went on a very heavy research period where I looked at some of the world's most expensive and luxurious yachts.
By the way, here's an interesting thing - all these lights here on these rods, including the pool table lights at the other end, which if anyone hasn't thought of it already, what the hell's a pool table doing on a yacht?
All of these are actually on one gimbal, so even though the actual set isn't on a gimbal, all of the lights rock back and forth very gently.
You can look down and see, and there are tours where you can go on boats with glass bottoms. So, it's not an original idea, but certainly this extravagant and this size is pretty unique.
It's funny, when you work on something like X-Men and you have the plastic prison, and you're used to walking on glass and things that don't really look like they have any structure, you just sort of get used to it. And needless to say, the spiral staircase takes you up to a corridor, which then takes you up to another corridor, then another corridor, then finally you're up at the bridge. We also have these fish tanks, which we can wheel in and out, and we also have these convex mirrors.



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