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"Madam Secretary" VFX Breakdown Reel

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SJ Golden
Friday, Jun. 15, 2018

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The season finale of CBS’s political drama ‘Madam Secretary’ recently aired, closing with Secretary of State Elizabeth McCord (Téa Leoni) revealing her plans to run for president to her husband Henry (Tim Daly).  VFX Legion followed up the cliffhanger with the release of a breakdown reel that takes a behind-the-scenes look at the making of some of the most complex and exacting photorealistic computer-generated environments created by the Los Angeles-based studio for the show’s fourth season. 

VFX Legion’s first task was to create a CG replication of the White House for a large greenscreen set up. Helmed by founder, creative director, and senior visual effects supervisor, James David Hattin, its artists met the challenge, as well as the show’s tight deadline, and went on to create a variety of true to life CG shots from the ground up. Legion’s library enabled the company to expedite the production of many the effects by building on existing assets.

The studio helped take the role of visual effect to the next level, augmenting footage with shots that would have been impractical or impossible to shoot live. Its team created a digital doppelganger of Joint Base Andrews, the US military facility that houses Air Force One, and a real-world inspired digital rendering that used the Mosul Dam in Iraq as its frame of reference. The CG assets supported expanded storylines with scenarios that included the Secretary of State visiting these off-limit locations.

Credits
Production Company: Barbara Hall Productions, LA
Creator: Head Writer: Barbara Hall
Showrunner, Executive Producer: Barbara Hall
Executive Producer: Lori McCreary
Executive Producer: David Grae
Producer: Téa Leoni 
Producer: Tony Palermo
 
VFX Company: VFX LEGION (Season 4)
CD/Senior VFX Supervisor: James David Hattin
VFX Executive Producer: Reid Burns
VFX Producer: Nate Smalley
3D Supervisor: Rommel S. Calderon
On-Set Supervisor: David Isyomin 
3D Animation: Alex Keller 
3D Lighting: Chris Strauss
3D Lighting & Texturing: Bryan Sheppard
3D Tracking: Ruy Delgado
Matte Painting: Marc Adamson 
VFX Coordinator: Lexi Sloan
Compositing: Nick Guth
Compositing: Austin Hiser
Compositing: Christopher Klassen
Compositing: Milton Muller
Compositing: Eugen Olsen
Compositing: Kyle Spiker
Discipline: 
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