Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is out in theaters dominating last weekend's box office and motion capture (mo-cap) actor Andy Serkis has been talking to the press to promote the new movie. While the majority of his interviews focused on the new Apes film, some media outlets managed to sneak in a few questions about his current movie project.
His current project is Avengers: Age of Ultron. Serkis' performance company, Imaginarium, has been consulting on the Avengers sequel because there's a lot of mo-cap work in the movie. Actor Mark Ruffalo is doing mo-cap work as the Hulk, James Spader (to some capacity) as Ultron and Ultron's army of bots by various stunt actors.
Speaking with TheDailyBeast.com, Serkis detailed the work Imaginarium is doing for Ruffalo and the Avengers: Age of Ultron production.
"The difference for Mark this time around is that the Imaginarium, which is our performance-capture studio in London that’s providing all the performance capture for the Avengers movie, is providing education. Previously, he would’ve walked onto a set and you’ve got Thor and all the other characters in their costumes looking magnificent, and then you’d have Mark in a grey motion-capture suit playing this enormous character, so it’s about giving the actor the right atmosphere and credibility for the performance, which we did in a number of ways. We had to educate the director that the actor owns the role, and what you get on the set is what you should be aiming to put into your cut as the final performance—with the rendering coming later on.
"Also, we worked with Mark in really grounding him and playing with the digital avatar before going on set so he could see himself as the Hulk before going onscreen, and we put weights and inhibitors on him to give him the sense that his arms were these big, giant wrecking balls, and so that his biceps wouldn’t intersect with his body. We equipped him. We also gave him a sound system and pitch-modulated his voice so you could hear the enormous Hulk roar coming out of these speakers, so the crew would go, “Jesus! That’s Hulk on set!” It gives Mark the sense of feeling better, and if he feels better, then he’ll be more comfortable in the performance."
Then, the mo-cap actor was quickly asked if he's playing a motion capture role of Thanos, since actor Josh Brolin is reportedly only voicing the Marvel villain.
"Um…I’d have to deny that character at this point. But I am playing a character. I was really thrilled that Joss Whedon asked me to be involved. It’s fantastic. I’ve had a ball working with them, both as performance capture consultant through the Imaginarium, but also being asked to be in it. But I can’t say anything more!"
Finally, Serkis was asked is he's not playing Jar Jar Binks in Star Wars Episode VII and, while laughing, confirmed that he is not!
Avengers: Age of Ultron is on the home stretch of filming in the United Kingdom and releases on May 1, 2015.