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Not all that glitters is gold

The FX Team Of The Hobbit Had To Study Herpes [VIDEO]

Bet that’s something you weren’t expecting to hear today. This is a behind-the-scenes look at the FX that went into creating the Goblin King for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Turns out, that involved the team researching things like herpes (don’t worry, they don’t show any of the research in the video). The LA Times has two more, one for Gollum, and one for Azog, plus an interview with Weta visual effects supervisor Joe Letteri. He said, “It was all about making him as disgusting as possible.”

(LA Times via io9)

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  • Kifre

    As someone who suffers from cold sores (caused by herpes virus) I don’t especially appreciate any of this. Thanks TMS and Weta for reminding me that having this condition makes people extra ‘disgusting’…

  • John Wao

    TMI! TMI!

  • Nick Gaston

    You think that’s bad? In one of those pre-render tests, I think I saw the King’s massive scrotum. Which may have had Elephantitis.

    Gollum looks like an Olympian Ubermensch, now. God help me.

  • Jill Baker Oliver

    It’s ok, technically chicken pox is caused by a herpesviridae, so now small children are being made to be self conscious as well. But really, probably around 90% of the population has HSV-1 or HSV-2 or both, so don’t feel self-conscious, we are all in the same boat. It’s those perpetually smooth lipped people that are abnormal.

  • Papallion Sunspell

    If you want the finished piece to be realistic, you need to have the entire foundation, cozies and all.

  • Jill Pantozzi

    Apologies, when I think of herpes my mind goes directly to genital herpes and I was trying to reassure people they weren’t going to see any pictures of something that would obviously be NSFW.

  • Kifre

    Ok, accepted. I see the logic.

    I really wish that there wasn’t an automatic assumption that herpes = just genitals/sex (because I’m scared stiff of the accompanying assumptions about infected persons). But it is what it is.

    Thank you for addressing it. :)

  • Kifre

    I believe it’s 1 in 3 people (in the US) that have HSV-1/2. But I did not know about chickenpox. It is oddly comforting to know that there are many others…

  • Jill Pantozzi

    You’re very welcome, and thank you for bringing it to my attention. By doing so you’re helping, at least myself, to not make that assumption in the future.

  • Anonymous

    mononucleosis is also part of that larger herpesviridae family. another one of those lovely diseases that keeps on ticking inside your system and will pounce on other equally unsuspecting individuals when you share food/drink/lipgloss/spit.