‘Justice League’ VFX Supervisor Explains Zack Snyder’s Vision For The Flash’s Speed Force

Justice League VFX Supervisor Bryan Hirota talked about creating The Flash’s Speed Force sequence and Zack Snyder’s ideas.

Zack Snyder’s Justice League features some incredible sequences that Scanline VFX created. One of them was Barry’s big moment at the end of the film when he enters the Speed Force after the Mother Boxes destroy Earth. Like the Aquaman underwater scenes in Justice League, it’s expected the Speed Force will look different in Andy Muschetti’s solo film. However, we still got a good taste of Snyder’s take on The Flash’s ability after the sequence got cut early on for the theatrical version.

Because The Flash’s Speed Force scene was cut during Justice League‘s first round of production, this led to Scanline VFX building off previs for the Snyder Cut. Justice League VFX Supervisor Bryan Hirota talked to Heroic Hollywood about Zack Snyder’s take on the Speed Force and bringing it back online.

“We had done a lot of Flash stuff. Like, when we were shooting Justice League, we shot that little cameo of The Flash in Suicide Squad. Me and my team at Scanline posted that stuff for the Squad Squad film. That was the first bit of Flash effects that anyone had ever seen. Then we did all the stuff inside the tunnel, like little Flash where you see multiples versions of him pushing the rocks out of the way and a bunch of zipping around. The Flash has always been a fun character for us to work with. We had a lot of interesting discussions about Speed Force and ‘what this does and doesn’t.’  When we got a chance do what we ended up calling the cosmic rewind, we were pretty excited. We wouldn’t have done it before anyways because that wasn’t part of our sequence, but it got killed pretty early in its development. It kind of existed as previs that didn’t all exactly cut together. We started looking into what this should all mean. You know, the singularity of the Mother Boxes that destroys the planet and The Flash phasing through it. What Zack had was this idea of cosmic footsteps as he’s rewinding time, with each of his footsteps being like a little mini big bang and creating a universe on a micro scale.”

Part of what makes The Flash’s Speed Force scene so remarkable is the realistic detail. Hirota further explained the idea of Barry’s steps being  “mini big bangs” and getting shots finished in time for Zack Snyder’s DC FanDome trailer:

“We anchored our ideas on a word cloud of like ‘cosmic rewind’ and ‘galactic footsteps.’ We started doing that right away because Zack put those into that Hallelujah trailer. I think there was three shots from that — the original phasing one and then there were two of the footsteps shots, one from the front and one from the back. I don’t remember when that trailer came out, but I think we heard about it ten weeks out or something. It wasn’t a lot of weeks. Maybe it was less. Maybe it was six or something. We were really just getting back into the fillm and Zack was like ‘I want to put this trailer out.’ It had three of these shots in it, so we just started diving into it really hard. We built enough of Russia, where we knew Flash needed to be for it to get destroyed and just started running simulations to destroy it and see how we felt about that. We got some of our look development artists on these shots to just kind of start to look into how we wanted the phasing effects to look in this film and just start coming up with multi-layered effects for the little big bangs for the footsteps and the little galactic swirls and the kind of Hubble telescope scope-inspired cosmic, swirly particles that exist in this nowhereville that Barry finds himself in. A lot of experimentation with different simulations. There was a lot of space photography that was referenced that seemed appropriate. And just trying to build upon some of the stuff we had done with the Flash leading into that moment.”

Was The Flash’s Speed Force scene your favorite from Zack Snyder’s Justice League? Let us know in the comments section below!

Here is the official synopsis for Zack Snyder’s Justice League:

“In ZACK SNYDER’S JUSTICE LEAGUE, determined to ensure Superman’s (Henry Cavill) ultimate sacrifice was not in vain, Bruce Wayne (Ben Affleck) aligns forces with Diana Prince (Gal Gadot) with plans to recruit a team of metahumans to protect the world from an approaching threat of catastrophic proportions. The task proves more difficult than Bruce imagined, as each of the recruits must face the demons of their own pasts to transcend that which has held them back, allowing them to come together, finally forming an unprecedented league of heroes. Now united, Batman (Affleck), Wonder Woman (Gadot), Aquaman (Jason Momoa), Cyborg (Ray Fisher) and The Flash (Ezra Miller) may be too late to save the planet from Steppenwolf, DeSaad and Darkseid and their dreadful intentions.”

Directed by Zack Snyder, Justice League stars Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Gal Gadot, Ezra Miller, Jason Momoa, Ray Fisher, Jeremy Irons, Diane Lane, Connie Nielsen, J. K. Simmons, Harry Lennix, and Ciarán Hinds.

Zack Snyder’s Justice League is now available on HBO Max. Stay tuned for the latest news regarding Ezra Miller’s The Flash, the future of the DC Extended Universe, and make sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel for more content!

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