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House of the Dragon VFX supervisor recalls animating Lucerys’ death scene



Vhagar and Arrax

The last episode of House of the Dragon aired last year, and it was exactly as depressing as viewers had expected. Those who had read the novels were looking forward to this day because the book’s ending included a death scene involving yet another significant character. Lucerys Velaryon, the second son of Queen Rhaenyra, was returning from Storm’s End as an ambassador when he was murdered by Aemond and his dragon Vhagar. Let’s have a look at what went behind the screens in this scene.

How Lucerys’ last flight scene was filmed

House of the Dragon visual effects supervisor Angus Bickerton recently talked to The Brunswick News and recalled how the team recreated the sequence:

“We animated the whole flight in Unreal, then loaded into Third Floor’s ‘Cyclops’ system. This is their particular version of a virtual camera; now you are in the scene, just looking for the coolest angles. We didn’t storyboard and then pre-vis; we did it entirely through these virtual-camera sessions.


We got very long takes. It’s not an animator sitting down and doing a five-second shot. Our visual effects editor edited that together, then we exported those files to another vendor who reanimated all the dragon stuff.”

How Vaseline was used for the rain effect

Bickerton also revealed how they improvised for the rain scene, “The best shots we got were when we actually put loads of Vaseline on the camera lens. So we had [actual] wind and rain, but we were literally smearing Vaseline on the lens to get that sort of shooting-in-the-storm cinematography.”

“We had a team do what we call a ‘Techvis,’ where you figure out how to translate that animation to the motion base and the camera, because the camera’s moving separately as well, so we’re getting the appropriate shots of them on the dragon backs.”

Read Next: House of the Dragon premiere had a secret callback to the Game of Thrones finale

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Sayantan is a keen follower of everything pop culture; from films, shows, anime to video games and latest memes. He started writing professionally for Wiki of Thrones during the 2021 lockdown, and has been developing his writing and editing skills ever since. Sayantan has since worked for several reputed firms, such as Collider and FandomWire, gathering experience and nods from some of the best in the industry. With a growing repertoire amassing renowned websites, Sayantan is your go to guy for all things Game of Thrones and House of the Dragon. When he is not hunting for headlines and theories, you can find him engrossed in fantasy shows, conspiracy theories and video games.

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