First Try at Special Effects

This is my second attempt to recreate the iconic scene from the movie Hancock.
Screen test

Shortly after I got my first quality video camera, I found a tutorial about how to create a “hancock” effect.

For those of you not familiar with the original, Hancock is a 2008 movie starring Will Smith as a down-and-out superhero. This was the same year that Marvel started its campaign to revitalize the superhero genre with the release of Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man. You can see an example from the original movie here:

Hancock jumps over the prison yard fence

Anyway, the tutorial I saw was created by Wren Weichman and posted to Tuts+ in March 2010. After watching it, I thought perhaps I could reproduce the effect for myself and soon conscripted my son and my nephew to take turns jumping and leaping in our driveway as I recorded their efforts. As I say, that was in 2010. Unfortunately, despite the walkthrough in the tutorial, my efforts to recreate the effect failed. Miserably.

Still, I never completely lost hope. So, last summer, I persuaded my now 16 year son to try again. He agreed and the result is much better than I expected though still not nearly as good as the original tutorial. My screen test is here:

Overall, I found the tutorial to be engaging and entirely suitable for a brand new filmmaker like me. Here’s my takeaway:

Hancock Tutorial:
  • Overall


Overall the tutorial has aged reasonably well. There were several times where I wasn’t able to entirely follow the instructions and found it a bit difficult to match my work with the tutorial. Still, as a beginner trying to learn how to shoot footage and apply special effects, this was a good tutorial to practice with.


Simple SFX meant I didn’t need a ton of knowledge to give this tutorial a try. 


The tutorial is a bit older so following was a bit difficult at times and I don’t think I applied all of the techniques properly as a result. 

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