Aquaman filming ‘dry for wet’ rather than underwater
“Shooting underwater is [in] a lot of ways impractical because you’re limited to what you can do with sets,” said actor Willem Dafoe, a co-star in the movie, in comments to film site Screen Crush.
“It’s more about shooting them dry for wet and then the effects do certain things to give the water feel. We aren’t doing the scenes underwater – but we are in harnesses and on wires. There is movement.”
Aquaman had a brief underwater-based cameo in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. This scene was in fact shot in water, but filming longer scenes underwater is a challenging proposition, and not only because of the issues for cast and crew.
“There is the challenge of building sets in water and keeping them from being eaten alive by the chlorine, and also [keeping] the water clear for the camera and the divers,” said Michael John Meehan, a location manager who specialises in working with water, speaking to KFTV in a previous interview.
“I have done this on several films and if it is only a day or two you can sneak by. If the sets are underwater for weeks on end, it is a challenge I don’t care to face again.”
Aquaman is based at Village Roadshow Studios in Queensland, Australia.
Open water filming is avoided as frequently as underwater production. The most recent Pirates of the Caribbean film built its ship sets on computer-controlled, studio-based gimbals to simulate the movement of the water, and new tank facilities – since made permanent as Kumeu Film Studios – were built in New Zealand for Jason Statham’s upcoming shark thriller Meg.
Image: Warner Bros