god speed
Singh's immortal heroes, the gods and goddesses of Mount Olympus, are a world apart from their human counterparts in beauty, strength and speed. The director envisioned them as idealized, larger-than-life creatures. "In the end, the gods have very little wardrobe," says Singh. "They had to be fit. That had to be a factor in casting."

Some of their seemingly superhuman abilities are the result of Singh's innovative use of the camera. "I wanted to take them to another level," says Singh. "So during the battle scenes, the gods move much faster than the humans, which adds to the action. All our fights are quite different. Those that pit humans against humans take place in real time. And when gods go up against gods, they match each other's superior speed, so the difference between their speed and the humans' is imperceptible and it still appears to be real time. But when gods go up against humans, humans are revealed to be like putty. They're frozen."

And at times, all three types of battle are taking place simultaneously. "There are a couple of sections where all the fighting sequences are differently done," Singh says. "I think it's pretty magical."

Making the director's brainstorm into reality took patience and persistence. "We shot the whole thing from the gods' perspective," he says. "Then we then shot the whole thing again from the human point of view. We shot something like four days of plates to make it right for each perspective. The humans practically freeze, while the gods are like lightning. It's not a fair fight."

Galvin explains that the magic was created by changing the camera speed. "Five hundred frames is starting to really slow things down and if you up that to a thousand, sometimes even the simple movements people make can look static," says Galvin. "It's an unreal speed, you're entering a different dimension in your head when you're going into those speeds because you see things. Most people are familiar with high speed from sports events. When you slow things down, it's quite different."

Canton finds the "god speed" effect an excellent example of the way the special effects have been woven throughout the film to become part of the story and storytelling. "Seeing the gods moving at hyperspeed and the humans moving in slow motion is more than just an effect," he says. "No one's ever attempted to manipulate time for two different characters in the same movie. It's not a movie; it's an experience. It's a life-changing event, like "Star Wars" was when we all saw it for the first time."