A Monster Calls tells the story of a young boy who seeks the help of a tree monster to cope with his mother's terminal illness. MPC completed more than 180 shots for the film. The team was lead by MPC Montreal VFX Supervisor Ferran Domenech , with the modeling and assets team in London.
The monster was voiced by Liam Neeson, who spent two weeks with director J. A. Bayona on Europe's largest motion capture facility in Oxford. MPC was tasked with close-up dialogue scenes, as well as the transformation from a Yew tree into the monster. The team modeled the face based on a head scan provided by production, and the body was modeled and textured as virtual wood pieces. The branches were then rigged to articulate muscles.
The team paid special attention to the eyes, which were created to closely resemble human eyes.
No motion capture data was used for the final animated shots, but Liam Neeson's video performance provided the reference.