Earlier this week, ComingSoon.net/Superhero Hype! flew down to Albuquerque, New Mexico to visit the green screen sets of Will Eisner’s The Spirit, which director Frank Miller has been shooting at the city’s new facilities, Albuquerque (ABQ) Studios. It brings to life Will Eisner’s classic comic book character Denny Colt, a police officer in Central City who was killed in action, but then returned as The Spirit, a masked crimefighter who has a way of attracting the ladies—and not only the nice ones—but who’s thwarted at every turn by the evil mastermind The Octopus.
The film is being made much like Miller’s Sin City and Zack Snyder’s adaptation of Miller’s 300 with actors doing all of their performances in front of a green screen and all the backgrounds and environments created using the latest computer graphics. This was ComingSoon.net’s second visit to an all green screen set after spending some time on the set of 300 two years ago, and while one might not expect there to not be a lot to write about when a movie is being made with no actual sets, in fact, there’s still stuff to see, since it’s an interesting process that requires a lot of clever workarounds for things that tend to be easy when using practical sets, such as how actors interact with objects within their environment, or lack thereof.
The production had taken up two of the larger soundstages at the brand new Albuquerque Studios facility, where security was extremely tight. Cameras and audio recording were verboten, and anyone who wanted to visit the stages needed to turn in their personal ID in order to get a special badge with an image of what looked like a Frank Miller drawn full body portrait of The Spirit. There wasn’t any question that it was worth losing or forgetting your driver’s license or passport there, if it meant a chance to watch a master like Miller at work. The Spirit is the first production to use the complex’s two newest stages and they were on Day 27 of a shoot that would be going through December 14.