Andy Serkis is one of the finest working actors in Hollywood. Despite his slew of critically acclaimed work, many people do not know his name and even fewer would recognize his face. Andy Serkis is the “King of MoCap” meaning that he is the first major pioneer into the new world that is performance capture. Performance capture (for those who aren’t aware) is that thing actors do when they wear skin-tight leotards covered in ping-pong balls. They have dots drawn all over their faces and wear helmets with cameras attached. These cameras ignore any modicum of personal space and get right up in the actor’s face. If you’ve ever watched the special features on a Peter Jackson DVD, you know that the whole thing looks ridiculous and frankly, quite unnerving for the actors. Those MoCap suits leave nothing to the imagination. You’re basically naked. The tech however, leaves everything to the imagination. It is now possible for an actor to fully portray an array of characters that were never possible before. Think of any sci-fi/fantasy character. Actors can play them now, regardless of how non-humanoid (dis-anthropomorphised?) — OK… not “human” they are.
Giant, blue monkey-cat-person?
It’s all possible now. Perhaps I am fascinated by this more than others. When I’m not writing, I pretend to be an actor from time to time.
Speaking of actors, you can thank Andy Serkis for all of this. The same Andy Serkis who should have no less than a few Oscar nods at this point. Sadly, he doesn’t.