In the second part of a special feature, MI6 guest writer "Odd Job" takes a close look at how the title sequence for "Die Another Day" was constructed with CGI, and how it contrasts with the rest of the series...

"Die Another Day"'s CGI Effects - Part 2
20th June 2003

Part one looked at how the computerised special effects and post-production wizardry helped create the teaser trailer. Part two now looks at the techniques used for the opening titles CG work

As with any Bond film, the open sequence sets the tone for the feature. The opening of "Die Another Day" broke the regular formula, developed by the man who has created the most title sequence for the series, Maurice Binder. During Brosnan's era, Daniel Kleinman has been in charge of the titles, and "Die Another Day" is the first film to update the opening titles this was achieved by conveying the story.

Set to the "Die Another Day" the title song written and performed by Madonna, the astonishing title sequences have traditionally been directed independently from the main feature. Daniel Kleinman has worked on latest three Bond outings, and for "Die Another Day" he collaborated with William Bartlett of Framestore-CFC who supervised the visual effects. The opening sequence leads to the eventual capture of Bond, and where DAD differs from all other past Bond outings, it continues the story in the title sequence. This unique move allows the audience to snatch glimpses of Bond being integrated and torture.

The cross visualisation of the story and title sequence are weaved together in a highly imaginative way - for example the transformation of a red-hot poker into a fiery finger, and the interplay of CG scorpion between real life elements and the title sequence. The venomous arthropods where created by Jake Mengers, Simon Stoney and Don Mahmood.

William Bartlett, who has worked with Kleinman on previous Bond titles, was hard pushed to visualise Kleinman's vision on this project. The two dancing girls where filmed in Pinewood Studios using ultraviolet light. The shot required nine hours of make-up that allowed for a shadow-free, even skin texture. The final effect was created using live motions and offset CG, which gave the illusion of movement on the skin's surface.

The foremost difference between the ice woman's effects and fire woman's was the capture and CG work. The recording of the live elements was performed with two different cameras and a detailed body was scanned. The most difficult element was the CG look of the ice skin. If the skin texturing was not carefully fashioned it would end up looking like jelly and thus unbelievable. The use of fissures and cracks created a living ice sculpture in the silhouette of a woman.

These visuals allow the story to continue in dream like fashion in the background of the sequence. Although the use of the titles have shifted slightly to a story telling device, rather than two and a half minutes of pure style, the sequence still includes fundamental components of any Bond opening, such as dancing girls made up of fire, ice and electrical motifs.

History of Title Sequence Design

Title sequences by Maurice Binder:
Dr. No 1962, Thunderball 1965, You Only Live Twice 1967, On Her Majesty's Secret Service 1969, Diamonds Are Forever 1971, Live And Let Die 1973, The Man With The Golden Gun 1974, The Spy Who Loved Me 1977, Moonraker 1979, For Your Eyes Only 1981, Octopussy 1983, A View To A Kill 1985, The Living Daylights 1987, Licence To Kill 1989.

Title sequences by Robert Brownjohn:
From Russia With Love 1963, Goldfinger 1964

Title sequences by Daniel Kleinman:
GoldenEye 1995, Tomorrow Never Dies 1997, The World Is Not Enough 1999, Die Another Day 2002.

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"Die Another Day"'s Special Effects - Part 1