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Scene Stealer

'I Am Legend'

December 06, 2007

Looking to make Times Square appear completely abandoned? Don't use visual effects unless you've got time on your hands. "It took us eight months to do that for one eight-minute sequence," says Jim Bernie, Sony Pictures Imageworks' visual effects supervisor on the thriller "I Am Legend" (opening Dec. 14). In the film, about a virus that seems to have wiped out the human race, Will Smith plays Neville, an uninfected scientist in New York City looking for a cure to bring back humanity. While he ditches hordes of infected, once-human night creatures on Manhattan's lonely streets, a pivotal sequence in Times Square was different. "We couldn't shoot on location," Bernie says. "It would've been impossible to [eliminate] the people and replace the lighted billboards." So here's how they did it.

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