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Pixar animator shows the unsettling skeletons underneath 3D mouths

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Ever wondered how Disney’s Pixar brings its beloved characters to life? A recent social media post by animator Cody Lyon has offered a hilarious (biting) glimpse behind the curtain.


Lyon shared a few images showcasing the unfiltered look of 3D character mouths during animation for 2021’s Luca. These “work in progress” shots reveal a distorted and rather nightmarish appearance, with mouths stretched and contorted at unnatural angles. This is a far cry from the expressive and natural movements viewers see in the final product.



The reason for this unusual look lies in a technique called “animation cheats.” Animators strategically bend and manipulate the characters’ models slightly to achieve optimal lip-syncing and emotional conveyance within a shot. These distortions are calculated to remain unseen by the audience, ensuring a believable and seamless viewing experience.


Lyon’s post has sparked amusement online, with social media users calling the lesser-seen visuals “cursed,” “kinda terrifying,” and comparing them to “horror art.”


“That’s cool but I didn’t need to see it,” says one person.


“The front vs the back of a Christmas tree,” another fan comments.






Did you know animation body language, and the nuances behind those smiles and grimaces, was this fascinating?








Images: Cody Lyon

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