THOR: RAGNAROK Exclusive: Stephen Clee Details Creating The Hela Fight Scenes And Thor's Power Constraints

We spoke with Stephen Clee, an Animation Supervisor on Thor: Ragnarok, and he told us in detail about shapeshifting Hela's crown into weapons as well as the rules that come with Thor's powers and strength.

Interviews Opinion

Director Robert Rodriguez (Spy Kids) recently released his sequel to the cult-classic superhero film from 2005, The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3D. The new film is called We Can Be Heroes, and while Taylor Lautner (Twilight) headed up the last movie, Pedro Pascal (The Mandalorian, Game of Thrones) leads the new cast of younger talent.

We had the awesome opportunity to speak with a few of the movie's creatives, VFX supervisor Dan Macarin and Animation Supervisor Stephen Clee, to help promote the film. It was a fantastic opportunity to dig into their history with other Marvel films, particularly Thor: Ragnarok.

When we asked about Stephen's involvement in the Taika Waititi film, he was thrilled to share details of the Hela fight scenes and the process of using her crown to animate different weapons because of her powers. Similarly, he also told us about the constraints of animating the scenes when it comes to characters like Thor; it's imperative to properly convey the effects of his special moves, particularly when they collide with an opponent.

You can listen to Stephen's conversation in the clip below. We have also included multiple images from We Can Be Heroes, courtesy of WETA.

"I think in particular with the Marvel movies that I've worked on; it's a lot of research in the powers of the heroes or the villains that you're you're using. When we were doing the Hela fight scene in the middle of Thor: Ragnarok, it was really fun. She could bring knives out of nowhere, and we really played that up, that she could just throw knives everywhere and she could form a blade and change the shape of her crown at any point that she wanted to."


"So you work within those constraints, and you use those to come up with cool ideas that work within that set of rules. And the same kind of thing with Thor has a specific set of moves, with the spinning of the hammer and the flying, and he can do certain things. He's really strong, so if he hits somebody, they should probably go flying unless they're huge. And even if they are huge, working within those sets of rules."

Be sure to check out the trailer and synopsis for We Can Be Heroes below, and share your thoughts on the movie and this interview in the usual spot! We have also included our other chats with the guys about their work on We Can Be Heroes and bringing the squiggle monsters to life!


Dan Macarin and Stephen Clee talk about how Marvel films prepped them for We Can Be Heroes:


Stephen Clee and Dan Macarin talk Sharkboy & Lavagirl:

*This interview has been edited for clarity.*

When alien invaders kidnap Earth's superheroes, their kids are whisked away to a government safe house. But whip-smart tween Missy Moreno (Yaya Gosselin) will stop at nothing to rescue her superhero dad, Marcus Moreno (Pedro Pascal). Missy teams up with the rest of the superkids to escape their mysterious government babysitter, Ms. Granada (Priyanka Chopra Jonas). If they're going to save their parents, they'll have to work together by using their individual powers — from elasticity to time control to predicting the future — and form an out-of-this-world team. Full of action and heart, WE CAN BE HEROES is directed by Robert Rodriguez (SPY KIDS, THE ADVENTURES OF SHARKBOY AND LAVAGIRL) and also stars Boyd Holbrook, Christian Slater, Chris McDonald, and Adriana Barraza.

We Can Be Heroes is now streaming on Netflix.

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