Replicating the contestants’ walk to the studio to face the judges with a CG sequence, the hive’s promo for The X Factor piles on the pressure.

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Not content with terrorizing the untalented, tone deaf, and sometimes downright-ugly contestants on the new series of The X Factor, Simon Cowell, along with director Catherine Farrow, wanted to give the viewing public a taste of the fear the show invokes. 
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Created by the hive, a 30-second promo for ITV’s hit reality TV programme The X Factor is based around the idea of the terrifying journey that contestants take down the corridor on the way to audition in front of the judges. 
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In a sequence that is almost entirely CG, the audience follows the camera through a long, dark, and ominous corridor, where real-life footage of contestants being destroyed by the judges is displayed on the walls. 
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As the journey continues and the tension builds, we reach a pair of doors with the X Factor logo. The doors open to reveal three silhouettes which, as they move into the light, are revealed to be three X Factor judges.
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“Farrow and Cowell wanted to evoke the feeling that contestants start their journey with confidence, and become totally demoralized afterwards,” explains the hive’s creative director Phil Hurrell. “The look they wanted to achieve was urban and dark, not cheerful. The concept was relatively loose, but our brief was to make it look as realistic, and ominous, as possible.”
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With a schedule of just two weeks, the most challenging aspect of the job was making the corridor look realistic, says Hurrell. The hive’s senior animator, Howard Bell, modelled all of the elements of the corridor – the floor, wall, ceiling, even air-conditioning units – in Softimage|XSI. 
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“We purposefully built elements that reflected the light well. In terms of the lighting, we approached the project just as a lighting or cameraman would,” explains Hurrell.
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<h2>Realistic lighting effects</h2>
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