How to Fake Matrix-Style Bullet-Time Effects Without a Hollywood Budget

By Andrew Liszewski on at

Five months ago, the Russian musical group 5’Nizza released a music video for their track, Samoliot, featuring a series of mishaps that were seemingly frozen in time. But while the action was paused, the artists themselves continued to sing as the camera moved around them. It was a clever take on the bullet-time effect made popular in The Matrix, and we finally know how they created it.

The visual effects artists responsible for the bullet-time effects seen in The Matrix used a combination of multi-camera arrays, digital compositing, and computer-generated characters to realise the film’s iconic action scenes—which required a Hollywood-sized budget. Director Max Ksjonda came up with a cheaper approach for the Samoliot music video; hanging the performers and props in mid-air using ropes and stands, and then filming them against a green screen with a slow-moving camera.

There was still some post-production work needed to erase all of the supports afterwards, and to replace the green background. But that’s something a talented teenager could pull off using a copy of Adobe After Effects or Black Magic Design’s Fusion. [Vimeo via The Awesomer]