Lead vendor completed 340 shots for second series


Freefolk has revealed the work that went into creating 340 VFX shots for the second series of Fate: The Winx Saga.

The Netflix series based on the Winx Club cartoon transports viewers to the Otherworld where fairies and specialists train within the confines of Alfea College. The story centres around a group of teens, determined to master their enchanting powers, navigate rivalry, romance and supernatural studios at the magical boarding school. It has been available on Netflix since 16 September. 

Dave Houghton was overall VFX supervisor for the production, with the Freefolk team led by VFX supervisor Steve Murgatroyd, CG supervisor Harin Hirani, and VFX executive producer Meg Guidon.

The work included creating numerous ethereal elements for the series including fire, water, ice, air bubbles, writhing muscles, glowing veins, vines, a protective magical barrier for Alfea College and a portal as well as as an elaborate banqueting hall ceiling adorned with mangrove like tree roots.


However, the largest project was making CG characters called Scrapers. Integral to the story, the creatures, with complex and varied actions, feature throughout the show.

Murgatroyd explained: “We had a fair number of key sequences but the stand out ones would have to be Aisha and Flora’s encounter with the creature (or Scraper) in episode three, where we had over 30 shots to animate, many of them requiring interaction with the live action characters.


“Another key VFX we created was Musa’s run in with a Scraper in a gloomy basement in episode four. It’s fast paced and probably one of the more chilling moments. There are also Scrapers swimming in tanks, Scrapers smashing through glass, Scrapers attacking in large numbers and even Scrapers crawling under blankets - there are a lot of Scrapers.”


The FX department created proprietary setups for the crowd scraper shots that allowed the scrapers to avoid each other, as well as collide against one another and the environment. They also had to manoeuvre like the hand animated scrapers seen in other sequences.

Judy Counihan, executive producer for the series, said: “Freefolk did a fantastic job in creating an iconic creature and other images on Fate series two. The team were brilliant and we are all immensely proud of the results.”