More Proof that Something Went Horribly Wrong on the Way to Bringing The Thing 2011 to the Big Screen

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In his editorial on The Thing premake, Michael Felsher mused that something had to have gone wrong during post-production on the flick. The film just switches gears into a CGI-laden mess. Where were the practical effects? Well, sadly … we’re about to show them to you.

Sometimes it’s hard to see videos that are so mind-blowingly cool. It’ll break your heart these effects didn’t make it into the final product. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, and then you’ll be filled with anger as you watch the video below from Amalgamated Dynamics, Inc., the company behind the visual effects.

From the Press Release
An expedition of a lifetime becomes a subterranean nightmare in The Thing, the thrilling prelude to John Carpenter’s 1982 film of the same name. Debuting on Blu-ray™ Combo Pack with UltraViolet™, DVD, Digital Download and On Demand on January 31, 2012, The Thing stars Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Scott Pilgrim vs. The World) as paleontologist Kate Lloyd who, along with the crew’s pilot Carter (Joel Edgerton, Warrior), discovers a mysterious organism buried in the ice.

When a simple experiment frees the creature from its frozen prison, it unleashes a flood of chaos and paranoia upon the camp, pitting the team against one another. With the ability to mimic the physicality of anything or anyone that it touches, the shape-shifting creature makes everyone a suspect in this suspenseful psychological thriller. From Dawn of the Dead producers Marc Abraham and Eric Newman, The Thing also stars Ulrich Thomsen (Season of the Witch), Eric Christian Olsen (“NCIS: Los Angeles”), Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (“Lost”), Paul Braunstein (Tuxedo) and Kim Bubbs (“Bloodletting & Miraculous Cures”).

The Thing Blu-ray™ Combo Pack includes an all-new UltraViolet™ copy of the film. UltraViolet™ is the revolutionary new way for consumers to collect movies and TV shows, put them in the cloud and stream instantly to computers, tablets and smart phones, and soon, consumers can download to devices of their choice too. The Thing Blu-ray™ Combo Pack also includes a DVD as well as a Digital Copy of the film which is compatible with iTunes®, iPad®, iPhone®, iPod™ touch, Android or other retail partners. So now, consumers can truly enjoy their movies and TV shows anytime, anywhere, on the platform of their choice.

Special Features

  • Audio commentary with director Matthijs van Heijningen and producer Eric Newman
  • Deleted and extended scenes
  • THE THING EVOLVES: Profiling key behind-the-scenes stories of the film from inception to completion, including pieces entitled “The Legacy,” “The Inspiration” and “The Evolution”
  • FIRE & ICE: In a frigid environment and against a relentless foe, there’s only one hope: Fire. Join the cast as they train with flame-throwers, battle wildfires on-set and get schooled in the importance of understanding fire’s unpredictable personality.

    Proof that Something Went Horribly Wrong on the Way to Bringing The Thing 2011 to the Big Screen

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  • Steve Barton

    You're such an inspiration for the ways that I will never, ever choose to be.

    Get Your Box of Dread Now
    *US Residents Only .
    • DavidFullam

      For me the biggest loss was the initial ice monster. It’s a witty homage to what the original FX man for The Thing (the man Bottin replaced) had in mind. And you can’t really see it in action at all in the final cut.

    • Vanvance1

      Further proof that the people making the movies often don’t understand their audience at all.

      Hey Univeral, please note that if you want to wow the teens you’re going to have to show them something they haven’t seen a million times before. Newsflash, they grew up playing video games and seeing craptastic CGI. That means practical f/x are new and exciting again. Time to reinvent that wheel.

    • Rottenjesus

      If I ever make a monster movie I’ll be calling these guys. How could you not use any of that great stuff? The mind boggles.

    • darkamor

      How a prequel to John Carpenter’s THE THING could’ve succeeded :

      1) hire Rob Bottin to Direct the Film & Supervise Post Production Practical Effects (& pay whatever he asks for because it will be worth it for the results)

      2) insist on Practical Effects with minimal CGI (use CGI only to remove green screened out Practical Effects cables, etc)

      3) insist on enough time to complete Post Production (every single time Universal rushes the Post Production? The Film becomes an epic fail via poor quality CGI)

      4) quit treating a theatrical release like it was a poorly financed straight-to-dvd (invest the time & finances to deliver what fans will appreciate)

      5) listen to what your Special Effects Co. has to say regarding what will & can work (i.e. judging from the footage? I can see that Amalgamated Dynamics, Inc put a lot of work into the practical effects that should’ve been used vs. the awful CGI that made this film unwatchable)

      6) please fire whatever Universal Executive(s) were responsible for these “epic fail” decisions (please hire Universal Executives that care about the legacy of their Classic Monsters and / or respectful adaptions that came later from John Carpenter’s THE THING (1982) to Paul Schrader’s CAT PEOPLE (1982)

    • krawlingkhaos

      I haven’t seen the remake yet (or prequel, or cash-grab, or whatever…), but Carpenter’s Thing is one of my favorite movies of all time, in no small part because I love practical monsters. And even though I haven’t seen the new one, I’ve yet to read a single review that did not hate the CGI at the end, so seeing that none of this is in the movie makes me weep profusely. What the hell? Its one thing to slate your climax with bad CGI from the start, but why make all this awesome shit and then say, “No, we’re gonna go in another direction; thanks anyways.” Why on earth would they think an audience wouldn’t want to see this stuff? How brain-dead do people have to be to look at those creations and and say “No, CG would be better”? What the fuck!?! I think I’m going to have to go put in my Thing Blu-ray, pour several fingers of scotch, and weep.

      • Uncle Creepy

        Well to be fair you do see some of it. Just nowhere near enough of it. As Matt said, sometimes you just get glimpses.

        • krawlingkhaos

          Glimpses schmimpses; we should be getting full-on views of the practical creatures and glimpses of CGI. Alas, though, I fear that sailed.

    • Masked Slasher

      That creature at the very end is awesome. And if you’ve seen the movie and know what they went with instead … it makes it 20 times MORE infuriating.

      This is fantastic work, some real magic and artistry went into bringing THE THING ’11 to life. A shame it’s only glimpsed at in the finished film.

    • LSD Zombie

      I can honestly say I’m not the least bit surprised by this. It’s become increasingly hard for make-up fx guys to showcase their talents on screen nowadays. And I don’t think it’s going to get better in the future.

    • GQSioux

      That second video is NOT from The Thing. It’s a Facehugger test from AVP.

      • Uncle Creepy

        Oops. Thanks for the correction. I blame my overly distraught state of mind.

    • LifeMi

      I feel bad for those effects guys; all that great work gone down the shitter because Universal loves CGI.

    • James Coker

      again, Universal hates Practically made Monsters, they Love there dimestore CGI so much that it ruins there monster movies….note to self never let Universal buy your Monster movie script EVER

    • Uncle Creepy

      I mean how in the world do you not use that thing with all the eyes at the end? Clearly that was meant to be the final creature and instead we get a dimestore CGI From Beyond rip off with cliche tentacles.

      • MonsterMash

        I dug the tentacles, because I think the thing should look more organic and flowing than a segmented bug, kind of a mash of different body parts, not a praying mantis thing. But what I really hated was that CGI rubix cube tower. And the CG was just lame throughout the end. I kind of dug the final creature design, but there was nothing there that deserved that overuse of CG. But the creature in this video looks great. This movie just confused me. They got all the minor details, but forgot what really counted.

        • Eric Cord

          I get what you are saying about the natural movement and organics with the tentacles, but I am going to have to side with Uncle Creepy on this. The creature at the end of the video is more in tune with being “alien” in appearence. Aside from the chosen end creature having tentacles and “body parts” (which are almost lost in the CGI overload mess of an effect), it is very symetrical. Rob Bottin’s effects were anything but. Sure the spiderhead had two eye stalks on the two sides of it, but they are not placed in the same manner, nor was the growth point of the legs.

          So I guess my beef with it is that I felt this one at the end of the video has almost a nod to the original short story with the “three eyes” and crazy leg design. Plus it is one hell of a sculpt. And I am largly in favor of the practical effects over a terrible CGI effect any day.

          I would love for the producers to release the film as it was originally shot, sans CGI overload, just to see where they felt “it looked wrong”. Plus I want to see the encounter envisioned with Mary Elizabeth Winestead in the footage they show here.

          And whilst new to the message boards, I am not a new reader/follower, so Uncle Creepy, Matt, Foy, Buzz and everyone involved with the Dinner for Fiends, thanks for the great moments of insight and laughter!

    • James Coker

      they substituted CGI for Rick Baker transformation FX for Wolfman, then they fucked over all the great practical FX by replacing them for CGI for the thing…Universal really doesn’t like practical fx dont they

      • Eric Cord

        After seeing the footage of the “change tests” submitted by Baker for the Wolfman, after the fact, I am upset with the choice to do it CGI. I didn’t hate the Wolfman like some do (werewolves are my favorite movie monster hands, or paws, down so I have a soft spot for them and am biased. Plus the original ’41 version is my favorite horror movie of all time.) but it does not live up to the original. It seemed to me like they tried to combine parts of Curse of the Werewolf, The Wolfman, Legend of the Werewolf and Hamlet, to a detrimental effect.

        I won’t even start on the Thing here, it would take up too much space for me.

    • Sirand

      Fuck Hollywood.

    • Uncle Creepy

      I swear to god that first video makes me unbelievably sad.