Two characters fight over a knife

Mortal Kombat

This project was completed by Method Studios in 2021. Method’s film and episodic teams in Montréal, Vancouver and Melbourne are now a fully-integrated part of Framestore.

The Melbourne studio took on a significant parcel of shots on the exciting Mortal Kombat movie. This work primarily involved the four-armed monster Goro, the robot-armed Jax, the winged character Nitara, and the sharp toothed Mileena. VFX Supervisors Avi Goodman and Glenn Melenhorst led the effort from the 120 strong Melbourne team, whilst additional work was handled by the Montréal and Vancouver studios.

Effects Simulation
Visual Effects Supervisor

While Goro was inspired by the groundbreaking game itself and its deep lore, Goodman and his team set about building the four-armed monster with anatomical characteristics that are a bit more grounded in reality. "It was important that Goro felt like a plausible creature. We spent a lot of time on his internal structure, figuring out how his extra arms would work from a skeletal and muscular point of view. This work informed his final design, as well as allowing for physically based muscle simulations."

The team combined motion capture work with animation to create, over many iterations, a Goro that was monstrous but also had more realistic anatomical features and more expressive facial movements that indicate a greater interior life.  "There's some intelligence in there," Goodman elaborates, "and during his fight scenes, we did want it to read on his face if he's feeling cocky and invincible or if he's stunned and suddenly vulnerable."

For the Nitara character, Method provided a mix of full CG shots as well as adding digital wings to live action plates of the actress. "We've learnt a bit over the years - putting wings on creatures," Goodman notes. "Recently, we created a winged horse for Jumanji:The Next Level, which involved a good amount of exploration of flight theory -- what happens to the shape of wings during flight and how do birds and bats maintain lift and minimise drag." 

Jax is a military man with two elaborate artificial arms. This work revolved around rendering and integrating CG arms, and torso, replacing the arms and the entire upper torso of the actor portraying Jax.

"I had fond memories of playing Mortal Kombat as a kid," Goodman says, "When the opportunity came up to work on it, particularly to bring Goro to life, I was excited to get involved."

mortal combat film poster of six characters


VFX Supervisor
VFX Supervisor