Here's how 'Finch' robot Jeff came to life in the latest Apple TV+ hit

What you need to know

  • Apple TV+ movie Finch features a robot, but it isn't all CGI.
  • A new report notes how the movie's effects team used physical elements to create Jeff.

"We used the latest motion capture technology."

The hot new thing on Apple TV+ right now is undoubtedly Finch, a movie about a robot and a dog and, of course, Tom Hanks. That's oversimplifying things greatly, but what's interesting is the way the movie's visual effects team set about creating that robot, named Jeff.

A new Variety report looks into the way Jeff was brought to life. VFX supervisor Scott Stokdyk and his team were tasked with creating Jeff, with actor Caleb Landry Jones involved throughout.

Stokdyk had actor Caleb Landry Jones dress in a special suit complete with a mask as well as practical elements like the robot's outer arms and gloves. "We used the latest motion capture technology that doesn't rely on optical cameras," he explains. "That allowed us to have gyroscopic sensors that can be underneath clothing." When Jeff's other robot elements were added later, Stokdyk could choose which would be real and which would be added in CGI.

The result is a robot that looks increasingly lifelike in the way it moves, right down to tiny movements. It's all about makingt he audience believe that Jeff is real, while also "being true to Caleb's performance," according to Stokdyk himself.

Finch has already posted the biggest opening weekend ever seen by an Apple TV+ release, so it's clear Jeff is proving popular. Or maybe it's something to do with Tom Hanks — I'm told he has a promising career ahead of him!

If you want to enjoy Finch in style, be sure to check out our list of the Best Apple TV deals on the market today. The movie is available to stream on Apple TV+ now.

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