The plot of the Marvel VFX saga thickens as it turns out Marvel screened out of focus visual effects at the world premiere of Ant-Man And The Wasp: Quantumania.
Marvel’s in-house VFX workers voted to unionise in August in a historical move. The studio has long been criticised not just for its VFX-heavy third acts, but the impossible crunch it put its employees through.
“The year 2023 was the straw that broke the camel’s back,” says Anna George, a former Marvel Studios VFX assistant coordinator, who appeared before the Congressional Labor Caucus on 19th October. She gave testimony about the studio’s working conditions and deadlines, explaining the need to unionise.
In a Variety cover story, the extent of the struggle shines through. The third Ant-Man film, Ant-Man And The Wasp: Quantumania, which grossed $476 million worldwide – pennies in Marvel standards – was largely criticised for the quality of the visual effects, but it seems that us peasants actually had the better version of the film.
According to Variety, some visual effects were added to the film at the last minute, which resulted in them being out of focus when the film was screened at its flashy, probably very expensive, world premiere.
“There were at least 10 scenes where the visual effects had been added at the last minute and were out of focus,” a guest at the premiere told Variety.
“It was insane. I’ve never seen something like that in my entire career. Everyone was talking about it. Even the kids of executives were talking about it.”
The VFX staff had to rush the work on the film after its release date was brought forward and The Marvels’ was pushed to November. It’s not the only example of impossible deadlines for the VFX teams. WandaVision and She-Hulk had to add visual effects after they were released on the streaming service.
Speaking of The Marvels, it’s not looking good for Nia DaCosta’s superhero sequel either. Variety reports that DaCosta began work on a new film, Hedda, starring Tessa Thompson, while The Marvels was still in post-production. The film is currently projected to make between $50 million and $75 million in its opening weekend. These are disappointing figures for Marvel, especially when compared to Captain Marvel’s $159 million opening weekend.
With Marvel completely overhauling their approach to TV, it would seem that a similar approach might work for their films.
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