The shows of Gerry Anderson – including Thunderbirds, Captain Scarlet, UFO and Space: 1999 – have been benchmarks in the creation of stunning models and miniature effects, and the Model Unit is very proud to announce its involvement with Firestorm, a brand new science fiction series from Anderson Entertainment.
Following in the grand tradition of those well-loved series created by his father, producer Jamie Anderson has assembled a team of practical effects designers and technicians, with the goal of recreating the texture and feel of those ground-breaking shows, but using the very latest materials and cameras to bring those effects bang up to date.
Model Unit Supervisor Mike Tucker explains the appeal of the project:
“There are a huge number of people now in the visual effects industry – myself included – who are only here because of the influence that those Gerry Anderson series had on us. A large number of my regular crew are huge fans of those shows, and in particular of the work of effects designer Derek Meddings, so to get the opportunity to work on a project that puts models and practical effects at the heart of the production is incredibly exciting. I’m extremely grateful to Jamie, and to VFX Supervisor Steve Begg, for inviting us on board.”
The initial plan for Firestorm is to fund a pilot via the crowdfunding website Kickstarter, with the hope of then going forward into production of a full series.
More information can be found on the project here: Gerry Anderson’s Firestorm – Filmed in Ultramarionation by Jamie Anderson
Following the recent announcement that Wimbledon Studios Ltd has gone into administration, the Model Unit is pleased to announce its return to the historic Ealing Film Studios in West London.
Model Unit Supervisor Mike Tucker explains:
“The move to a bigger space at Wimbledon allowed us to handle two huge projects for Doctor Who that would have been very difficult at our Ealing facility. However, given the unfortunate situation that has arisen at Wimbledon, it makes perfect sense for us to return to the studio where we first set up shop in 2005.”
The move is taking place during the last week of August, and the Model Unit will resume normal service from September 1st.
For more information please contact Mike Tucker on 07973 636518, or at firstname.lastname@example.org
Sci-fi & Fantasy Modeller volume 34 is out on July 21st, with an in-depth behind the scenes feature on our work on The Time of the Doctor.
Sci-fi & Fantasy Modeller Vol 34 – Order Here
Model Unit Supervisor Mike Tucker was a recent guest blogger for the Wimbledon Studios website, talking about the BAFTA-winning effects work done for Doctor Who – The Day of the Doctor. The article can be read here: Mike Tucker on The Model Unit At Media Village
UPDATE (August 2014): Wimbledon Studios has sadly since gone into administration, and faces an uncertain future. As their website is currently suspended, we have reproduced the content of Mike’s original blog locally.
How are models used in the making of special effects? Mike Tucker tells the BBC Academy team how he used miniature Daleks and the TARDIS in the Doctor Who 50th anniversary special.
Read more: BBC Academy | Creating Special Effects for Doctor Who
“It’s a huge honour to win this award in such a competitive category, and I’m delighted that it’s for a programme that showcases just how good collaboration between different effects disciplines can be.”
– Mike Tucker, Visual Effects Supervisor
Find out more by downloading our press release:
The Model Unit is delighted to announce our success at last night’s TV Craft Awards, winning a BAFTA for our work on the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary story, The Day of the Doctor. Mike Tucker, Nick Kool and Alan ‘Rocky’ Marshall attended the ceremony at The Brewery in East London, along with representatives from Milk VFX, Real SFX, BBC Wales VFX and producer Marcus Wilson.
A full list of winners can be found on the BAFTA website: http://awards.bafta.org/award/2014/tvcraft
You can read more about the work on this landmark episode in our press release, which you can download here.
We are also delighted to announce that The Model Unit finally has its own Facebook page and Instagram account. You can also click through via the right-hand sidebar on this site. Please spread the word by liking and sharing!