This article is available in: French
Catarina De Morais, Tom Dufour, Etienne Dutrieux, Axel Laroche, Laurent Pozzuoli have unveiled Morte Nera, their thesis short film (French school MJM Graphic Design Paris – class of 2021) An animated short film rooted in real events, with an horrific twist…
The Black Death has invaded the Tuscan city. The streets are deserted, healthy citizens confined, while the Florentine guard strives to maintain order in this climate of terror. Alvise, a plague doctor, roams the narrow streets and dark buildings of the city out of sight, looking for plague-stricken bodies on which to perform his experiments, in the hope of finding a cure. Until the day when, during yet another autopsy, a strange and monstrous creature springs from one of these corpses…
The team behind the short film shared with us some information and behind-the-scenes visuals. The team wanted their film to stand apart from most student short film, and they also wanted to create a horror short film.
Since the story is inspired by real events (the Black Death) and is located in a real location, the artists chose a realistic visual style. This allowed them to highlight the horror of the event, but also to challenge themselves from an artistic and technical point of view.
The short mostly takes place by night, which allowed the team to light their sets using flames and candles to achieve chiaroscuro.
The short was mainly created using 3ds Max, but also tools such as Substance Painter, Phoenix FD, Zbrush, Marvelous, Premiere Pro, After Effect (stock footage was used to create most of the FX), V-Ray.
This making-of video features close-up views of the creature, as well as a compositing breakdown: