NBCUniversal / Emerald City

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Official series trailer. Produced by NBCUniversal Television and Directed by Tarsem Singh Dhandwar the series is a modern-day version of The Wizard of Oz. 

Our team were entrusted to deliver over 400 shots including hero components such as the Emerald City itself, the Wizard’s Castle, a gigantic 150m tall stone Giant and the Wizard of Oz’s iconic Tornado and Flying Clockwork Monkeys.

A variety of disciplines were employed, from concept design, pre-viz, sculpting, simulations, character animation to a novel procedural environment technique developed in-house. 

The Emerald City is a complete CG environment, designed and built to replicate an ancient coastal city, centred by the iconic Wizard’s castle and guarded by a series of colossal stone giants at the city entrance. The method used in the approach to the build of a full 3D city allowed the production to revisit the city, a character itself, many times throughout the season. A procedural environment built using Freefolk’s in-house tools efficiently setup large areas of detailed cityscape. The traditional approach would be to produce specific matte paintings to order, in building the city asset the landscape was provided before shot production started. 

Furthering their Emmy nominated legacy with TV series Da Vinci Demons, the team utilised proprietary volume tools enabled specific art-direction of the weather system forming the super tornado built using a dynamic rig and simulation system.

Freefolk’s VFX Supervisor Paul Simpson comments, ‘We had quite a responsibility to the audience on this project, the story holds a special place in almost everybody’s childhood. To be able to realise the reimagined world of Oz in the Emerald City was a real honour.’

  • Director Tarsem Singh
  • Studio NBCUniversal
  • NBC VFX Supervisor Tom Horton
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  • VFX Supervisor Paul Simpson
  • VFX Producer Gavin Gregory