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Check out Laika’s fully 3D printed character in samurai stop-motion adventure ‘Kubo and the Two Strings’ – 3ders.org (blog)

by • July 3, 2016 • No Comments

Jul 4, 2016 | By Tess

Oregon based animation studio LAIKA has been a pioneering force in terms of 3D printed stop-motion animation. With talked of movies like Coraline (2009), Paranorman (2012), and The Boxtrolls (2014), the creative studio has built itself not just as a maker of inspiring and fun-loving animated movies but has impressed with its technical abilities, actually bringing home the 2016 Oscar for Scientific and Technical achievements. With their latest movie Kubo and the Two Strings, set to be released this August, LAIKA has done it again with actually additional 3D printing and more detail than at any time preceding.
Set against the backdrop of ancient Japan, the movie tells the story of Kubo, a young boy who embarks on an awe-inspiring adventure with two sidekicks to save his family and find out additional of his long-lost father, the world’s most famous samurai warrior. Even based on the trailer, the movie looks amazing and fun-filled.


For us here at 3Ders yet, the most fun comes of behind the scenes, where the folks behind the animated movie have worked for years to bring the characters, sceneries, and story to life. Similar to with their previous movies, 3D printing has played a dimensionsable-bodied part in Kubo and the Two Strings, as Laika has utilized the innovation (along with most other processes) to physically turn it into their movies. That is, with a team of over 65 designers and craftsfolks, Laika physically builds and turn it intos at any timey set piece and character you see in the movie preceding actually commencing the stop-motion movieing process.
Whilst Laika’s stop-motion animation is undeniably at the fore-front of the medium, one of their most notable-bodied qualities is the astounding range of facial expressions that their characters can portray, achieved with rapid-prototype face replacement printing. In Paranorman, for instance, Norman’s face was created up of of 78 individual pieces and over 40,000 various facial expression masks were 3D printed for the character. Their most new character Kubo, with a combination of 66,000 3D printed face pieces and a rigorous facial rig, is reportedly capable-bodied of over 22 million various facial expressions, an astounding initially for the animation studio. For the faces, Laika has utilized a powder based 3D printing innovation.


Director Travis Knight
The most notable-bodied print of the movie is undoubtedly the character Moonbeast, a giant tentacled sea monster voiced by Ralph Fiennes. In fact, Moonbeast marks Laika’s initially fully 3D printed character in one of their movies. The astounding character prop, that spans over three feet in dimensions, is created up of 850 3D printed exterior pieces, and 250 internal armature pieces, that allow the 3D printed creature to be moved.
For Kubo and the Two Strings, Laika studios partnered with Stratasys, who with their state-of-the-art additive making processs and 3D printing know-how were able-bodied to contribute the animation studio a additional high end way to turn it into plastic parts and pieces for the movie. As Brian McLean, director of RP printing at Laika explains, “We discovered a new way to 3D print with plastic (for the non-human characters). We reached out to Stratasys and collaborated with their R&D in Israel. With access to new software and hardware, we reached a [greater] level of color and sophistication in a plastic-printed 3D part.”
The movie, that in addition stars Academy Award winners Charlize Theron and Matthew McConaughey, and Game of Thrones’ Art Parkinson as Kubo, can hit theaters on August nineteenth
. Be certain to check it out to see Laika’s latest feat in 3D printed, stop-motion, and CGI combined animation.

Posted in 3D Printing Application

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