Full disclosure: this is a very unscientific investigation.
Lately, I’ve been watching a whole bunch of great VFX breakdowns, and I was curious which ones in the past few years have been the most popular.
Actually, I was curious about which one was THE most popular. So my very unscientific research involved searching for ‘VFX breakdown’ on YouTube and clicking on ‘sort by view count’.
The result turned up this breakdown showcasing the bison sequence from S. S. Rajamouli’s 2015 hit, Baahubali: The Beginning (the sequel, Baahubali 2: The Conclusion, was released in 2017). The video below, at time of publishing, has 18,690,635 views.
Now, importantly, the poster of this VFX breakdown is not the creator (which is often the case). The creator of the bison VFX is Tau Films, one of several VFX vendors on the film. Tau’s relatively new YouTube page does have the video, too, but with only a tiny amount of views.
By all reports the Baahubali films were massive successes in India and elsewhere, and it’s incredibly fun to check out other videos about how these movies were made and that showcase the VFX work. For example, check out vendor Makuta VFX’s YouTube page for a couple of breakdowns. Another example is this official making of video for Baahubali, which has more than 45 million views.
Of course, my unscientific approach to finding the most watched VFX breakdown does not take account videos and their views posted elsewhere, such as at vimeo, or on Twitter and Facebook. There sure are some great ones I’ve seen, especially for recent Marvel films like Avengers: Endgame, while ‘analysis’ or ‘reaction’ VFX videos, which tend to also feature breakdowns, are definitely pretty hot right now.
I for one am enjoying this new age in the era of VFX breakdowns – what about you? What have you seen recently that you loved, and am I wrong about the most-watched VFX breakdown? Share your thoughts in the comments.Get bonus VFX material by becoming a befores & afters Patreon member