Industrial Light and Magic dropped a 16-minute video Thursday night dissecting the building process of The Mandalorian’s Razor Crest warship.
The mini-doc centers on executive producer Jon Favreau’s vision of bringing the tactile look of Star Wars spaceships to The Mandalorian. Favreau wanted a scale model of Din Djarin’s Republic-era Razor Crest for VFX reference. But he did infer director Guillermo Del Toro’s clever advice of having models built for post-wrap personal collections.
Big Kids and their Bigger Toys…
The short film starts with initial designs for Mando’s preferred mode of intergalactic transportation. ILM VFX legend Doug Chiang took inspiration from the U.S. Air Force’s A-10 Warthog for the Razor Crest’s design. The influence is visible in the front hull lines and the massive turbines propped behind the cockpit.
Building any model from scratch is no easy task. But building one for a potentially iconic ship is daunting. Fortunately for Favreau, hyper-realistic models are part of ILM’s DNA. It’s been over fifteen years since their last attempt at a sculpted model. But the VFX team made a beautifully detailed ship using 3-D printers and a plethora of drawn experience.
The Razor Crest model wowed so many, Favreau requested a live action fly-by shot to showcase at Star Wars Celebration 2019. I won’t spoil ILM’s process with a lame synopsis of the process. You’ll have to watch the video to see it all come together.
Building a Galaxy Far, Far Away
Part of The Mandalorian’s appeal comes from the laser focus of its dedicated production staff. The fifteen shots using the Razor Crest model are only a sliver of the amazing visuals throughout the first season. Yet the attention given to recapture the feel of the Original Trilogy so captivating is felt watching this featurette.
Check out the full video below. Waking to this in my YouTube feed (among other new releases) is making this the best Friday in a long, long time. It’ll be interesting to see if fans can decipher which shots used the model Razor Crest. Sound off below if you’ve spotted any in your latest viewing of The Mandalorian!