A decidedly dark turn for the sequel of Gabriele Salvatores
' fantasy film The Invisible Boy - Second Generation
. Michele, the superhero boy, is now 16 and deadling with his teen angst, quest for rebellion and a dark side that is knocking at the door. Between an open bar and a nervously smoked cigarette, jealousy for his dream girl who is in love with someone else and a hoodie to isolate himself from the outside world, the film shows its first images at Alice nella Città
. A new character has been added to the story: it's Natasha (Galatea Bellugi
), the mysterious sister of Michele. The girl too has super powers and lives with the biological mother of them both, Yelena (Xenia Rappoport), who reappears after 16 years.
As the protagonist Ludovico Girardello
puts it: "The film is very different from the previous one, and it's very cool. I see the first film as a sort of introduction to the core story that is represented in this second instalment, which is much darker and gloomier, just as I like it." Galatea Bellugi defines her character as one "difficult to understand, wrapped up in mystery and very moody." Her power is to set things on fire when she gets irritated, "it's been much fun to play this role among so many special effects. It's been a challange to find my place within an ongoing story."
As in the previous film, the special effects are curated by Spanish artist Victor Pérez
(Pirates of the Caribbean, Harry Potter, The Dark Knight - Return
): "Unlike Hollywood films, my idea is to focus the big show of special effects on a small and intimate story. The Invisible Boy - Second Generation
include 650 shots with effects and the work has been carried out so meticolously that the actors themselves, when they saw the final images for the first time, didn't realize that in many scenes Ludovico's body has been recreated in 3D." On the work of the special effects: "Many people think that the work on visual effects is done at the post-production stage, but they really have to be in the script already. For instance, many months before the shooting, in order to understand where and how to put the cameras, we recreated the final scene of the film, which is also the most spectacular one and required more than half of the visual effects budget of the whole film." Regarding some shots including fire scenes: "It's a combination of real effects recreated on the film set, and post-production work. For instance, for the scenes with Michele's t-shirt or the entire bar bursting into flame, we lighted small fires and then recreated most of the flames with the computer."