'Inception' Visual Effects Supervisor: Winning an Oscar and Folding Paris 'Are Both Dream-Like Situations'

Paul Franklin collected the trophy with his team Chris Corbould, Andrew Lockley and Peter Bebb.

For Paul Franklin, Oscar-winning visual effects supervisor on Inception, winning an Oscar and folding Paris “are both dream-like situations. I hope I don’t wake from this one.”

Franklin collected the visual effects award with his fellow Inception nominees Chris Corbould, Andrew Lockley and Peter Bebb.

When it comes to VFX, Christopher Nolan has a reputation for wanted to do as much in camera as possible, despite the arsenal of digital effects capabilities that are available to him.

“Chris was very keen to ground Inception’s VFX in observed reality — something we can photograph,” Franklin told The Hollywood Reporter, adding that an entirely CG approach can a bit too much of a "fantasy" feel. “Chris was keen that everything in the dream would feel real.”

An example is the hospital fortress destruction that occurs during Inception’s climax, which involved conceiving, building and destroying a remarkable miniature of the complex that stood 40 ft. in the air.

“In Chris’ mind, it was always a miniature, it was the only solution we discussed,” Franklin said. “Chris was keen that everything in the dream would feel real. Also the snow sequence was an homage to James Bond movies, so we wanted a spectacular Bond ending. What better way to achieve it than the way they did it [for Bond classics].”