Wow, response to “Anatomy of a Cylon” has been overwhelming! I’m holding back tears of joy as I read all of your enthusiastic comments, emails and forum posts. Pierre is so thrilled by the feedback I think he’s getting ready to hand out cigars as all of you fawn over his new baby. By popular demand, I’ve been digging through the files to find a few more tidbits that didn’t make it into the main body of the article…
Here’s a glamour shot of the gold, command Centurion, as seen in the back of the Raider cockpit shot from Razor:
I’ve had a few people tell me that when they saw the gold Cylon, they thought they had died and gone to heaven. Who would have guessed that the people making the new Galactica were rabid enough fans to include that? Hey, guys, remember – I’m the one that wore an original Colonial Warrior uniform to the Emmys. When it comes to getting original series material right, I got you covered. When Razor scribe Michael Taylor asked if there was such a thing as a Cylon CAG, I busted out the gold Command Centurion and he was happy as a clam (in fact, the scripted skydive sequence specifically called for the gold Cylon, but in early visual effects tests we found that the gold armor was too close a match to Adama’s gold/brown flight suit; the more contrasting silver Cylon was better choice visually). Speaking of the skydive sequence, peep this:
Just when I had resigned myself to the fact that we’d have to loose the Cylon’s trademark sword (it just looked a little goofy hanging from the belt of the Terminator-like updated model), Pierre came up with the super bad-ass concept of having the sword be a giant switch-blade, hidden in the Centurion’s arm! Not only did it mean we ended up retaining every last detail from the original series, it made for a great, surprise moment in the skydive sequence. And speaking of every last possible detail:
See those little, tiny pinholes over the Cylon’s brow? Some might think they were an effort to literally capture every last detail from the original 1978 Cylon costume, which had tiny holes in exactly the same spot so the actors could see through the helmet. Of course, that would be silly on a CGI model, since (as far as we know), there is no actor inside a computer-generated Cylon. No, those little holes are clearly meant to be heat ventilation for the ultra-powerful brain/CPU, located in the cranium of the Centurion. And we’ll swear to that under oath!
Here’s a nice shot of the Cylon’s best friend. Sure, the new Centurions have machine guns built into their arms, which is all kinds of cool… but there’s just something… I don’t know… butch about giant robots carrying giant guns. And, in a fight, if the old school Cylons ran out of ammo, they’d easily beat the new Cylons to death with this gun.
And, finally, just in case anyone ever dares to doubt just how psychotically devoted we are to our jobs and to preserving the legacy of Battlestar Galactica, take a look at Pierre’s choice for the bolt pattern used to build the classic Cylons:
Need I say more?
Ok, that wraps up our look at these bad boys, but rest assured, there is more to come in the days, weeks, and months ahead. We have a few Cylon surprises in store (including a look at rebuilding the classic Raider and Baseship for Razor) as well as showing you what goes into creating some of the visual effects shots that make you squeal every week.