Debunking The Revenant Myth!

Hi peeps! I want to apologize for the small BIT (break in transmission) last week. I wasn’t feeling up to writing with everything going on in the country. Just couldn’t stop thinking about how we got to this place where we have to kill each other for political ambitions and wreck the country for personal gains. It’s quite disheartening when you think about it. So in some way Naija did try to steal my chi but no worries people, I didn’t let them.  And I’m never going to stop praying to get our beloved Naija restored to a better place either.daily500

Again I want to say a big thank you to everyone who sent in comments. Jollyhood appreciates that you can take time out to read and respond to our blogs. Funmi, saw your better quotes for Kung Fu Panda 3. Nice. (See post A Message of Hope). Ekes, will get back to you on the quiz stuff. And Neca your email about the bear attack in ‘The Revenant’  being real (See Posts Film Tricks and A Sarah’s Timeout) made me do some research to find out what actually went down in that movie.

aa-revenant-header-1-front-main-stageFor those who have seen the film ‘The Revenant’ the infamous bear attack where Leonardo DiCaprio is viciously mauled by a grizzly bear was described as one of the most shocking scenes in modern cinema. And it probably garnered the film its volume of awards including the Best Actor, Academy Award for DiCaprio. The scene, the most talked about in the film was a subject of controversy with a prelease of an inaccurate report which suggested DiCaprio’s character was raped by the bear. Ewww! Talk about going overboard in the name of acting. Definitely don’t see DiCaprio or any actor doing that for the gold statute, so don’t need a soothsayer to know it wasn’t true. My take had been that the production team used a real bear, a trained of course and had superimposed it somehow into the scene to make it look like a real bear attack. But it couldn’t have been further from the truth, because DiCaprio wasn’t attacked by a bear but by man pretending to be a bear. Can you beat that!


Glenn Ennis a 51 -year old stuntman donned a special outfit to help to create the brutal scene that had DiCaprio’s character mauled and nearly killed by a bear. In rehearsals Ennis wore a blue suit with a bear head and had to watch videos of bears attacking to study their traits and the ways they move. Director Alejandro Iñárritu was adamant that his blue bear character move the same way a real bear would. Talk about dedication. An online footage of an actual bear attack at a German zoo, in which a man drunkenly stumbled into the cage was used as a reference by a stunts team to work out the choreography of how they were going to tug and pull DiCaprio during the mauling. The team also wanted the actor visible, the scene kind of messy and positioned the stuntman in such a way that he was grabbing and pulling DiCaprio in all the right places where the bites would be.


Apart from the quiet or stillness of the moments that occurred in between the vicious attacks and the anticipation of what was going to happen next which made it scarier and worse (in my opinion). Another remarkable thing was the seeming randomness of the attack, which they shot in “one continuous take” in freezing cold and rain. That was extremely tough on the actor who faced hypothermia during the shooting. Overall, it was a brilliant collaboration between Iñárritu, cinematographer Emmanuel (Chivo) Luzebeki, Leonardo DiCaprio, production designer Jack Fisk, the stunt team, ILM, the sound editing/design team of Martin Hernandez, Randy Thom and Lon Bender, editor Stephen Mirrione and Technicolor in post.

The make-up effects also had to look very real and the work of the duo Sian Grigg and Duncan Jarman had them nominated for the film. Grigg said “The scale of the make-up was epic. And the bear attack was particularly challenging”.chest-wound-prosthetics-445514.jpg

The effects involved recreating gouges in the actor’s back, gashes in his throat, frostbite and a dislocated ankle. The whole of the actor’s body and head were covered in prosthetics that looked terrifyingly real andneck-wound-prosthetics-445515.jpg were capable or oozing blood when necessary. This took four and a half hours to apply with four people working on him continuously. A silicone neck appliance was used that could bleed and bubble from several points. Whoa! Guess that explains the river scene where DiCaprio drinks water and it oozes out from a gaping wound in his throat. In all the infamous bear attack scene in the acclaimed film involved Leonardo DiCaprio, his stunt double, some special effects and a stuntman in a blue suit. Ray Mears fact-checked The Revenant

It just blows one’s mind the staggering amount of work that went into this film, the level of commitment and dedication shown by the Hollywood filmmakers and confirms my take that ‘The Revenant’ deserves all the Oscars it got (posts SoWhite Oscars & Re:SoWhite Oscars).

Well I hope you had has much fun as I did debunking the Hollywood film tricks with ‘The Revenant’. Do stay tuned as you don’t wanna miss Friday’s Movie Review. Until remember it’s all about the movies and don’t let anyone steal your chi. Cheerio!

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1 Comment

  • Reply
    Neca Ugochukwu-Onyeka
    March 24, 2016 at 11:45 am

    i Just discovered that the Revenant has brought 12 Oscar nominations, I need I think they deserve it. After going through ‘the Debunking of the revenant myth’ I also wanted to add that though the movie wasnt like the best of the year but the production is breathtaking. If you watched the movie like I did, Di Carpio, ate raw meat.I believe that was real.The cold freezing temperature was real, The position of the sun was closely monitored as each shot was captured at the right time. What did it for me in this movie was the costumes, production design, make up, photography and Di Carpio.
    Thanks Jollywood for giving me ideas of things to watch out for when watch a movie.

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