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Ratatouille: Behind the scenes 2

Ratatouille

Feature by Rob Carnevale

Assembling the ingredients (characters)

Supervising chefs: Jason Deamer (character designer) and Brian Green (character supervisor)

What happens? Jason and Brian work on every aspect of the character, from the look of Remy the rat and Linguini the bumbling chef to ensuring that everything – from facial expressions to hair patterns – works as it should. They also concentrate on issues such as scale, to ensure that every perspective is accounted for. And they base as much as they can on research provided for them by other members of the Pixar team.

Jason Deamer comments on character design: “One of the first things we do when we design the characters is to go to real life. On this film, we took four or five trips to Paris to visit restaurants. And we also look at people we know to reflect the characters. The director also has artists that inspire him. We’ll take all of those ingredients and start drawing like crazy.

“We’ll do that until we home in on what the director feels is the best personality. A lot of the process isn’t just about finding out what the character looks like, but also how he behaves. The character’s behaviour is evolving all time. We also have to figure out who the person is, what kind of facial expressions they’re going to make, how much the face is going to need to stretch, where it’ll wrinkle and all. And the final part is to explore hair colours and stuff like that.”

NEXT: Adding the flavours