Three Different Visual Styles in Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland
When we first announced that Tim Burton was directing Alice in Wonderland, we wrote that the film would feature a combination of live-action footage and performance-capture imagery all in 3D. At the time I didn't know what all that would mean, but took it as a sign we might see something visually astounding. It wasn't until I read this interview with Alan Rickman at MoviesOnline (via SlashFilm) that I realized this certainly would be an astounding combination of a total of three visual styles. Rickman explains that, "the movie is a mixture of live action, animation, and stop motion, so it's very complicated." As far as I know, and even as Rickman noted, "I don't think all three have been put together ever before."
There have been mixes of CGI and live-action before and even some stop motion and live-action mixes, but I can't think of a film that features all three. That is, unless you want to count something like Hellboy II: The Golden Army, which had a stop motion puppet scene in the beginning and featured plenty of CGI characters. Even that isn't a good reference because I'm expecting Alice in Wonderland to look like nothing we've ever seen before, a lot like the Wachowski's Speed Racer. That's good news to me, because I loved Speed Racer and I'm already very excited to see what Burton's twisted mind has come up with.
For those who are wondering why the heck Alan Rickman is talking about Alice in Wonderland, he is starring in the film as the caterpillar. And yes, he will certainly be a CGI character, not unlike what Robert Zemeckis does in his films. And to give everyone an idea of the crazy visuals we'll be seeing, Rickman explained that Helena Bonham Carter, who plays The Red Queen, is "in a costume and in makeup but her head is going to be made three times bigger than it actually is on top of the costume." If you thought Disney's Alice in Wonderland from 1951 was already visually very trippy, just wait until Burton's version. If the classic can be described as a mind trip, then this will probably be described as a full on acid trip.