Bionicle: The Legend Reborn :: Interview With Mark Baldo And Maggie Langley
With the creation of his new, mortal body, the Great Spirit Mata Nui must enlist the help of the Agori people to rediscover his powers and find a way back to his old body. Kidzworld chatted about the Bionicle universe with the director Mark Baldo and the Head of Virtual Production, Maggie Langley.
At the moment of Mata Nui’s rebirth his body is taken over by his evil brother and the Mask of Light is jettisoned far into space. Now Mata Nui, who was once considered a god-like figure, has been born again as a mortal. “What we wanted to do was make it more accessible to people that weren’t familiar with the bionicle universe,” says the film’s director, Mark Baldo. “You can take the journey with Mata Nui and learn as he learns.”
Voicing A God
“When I read the script, the Mata Nui character was so noble and brave,” says Mark. “The only voice I ever imagined was Michael Doran’s. The way the lines were written reminded me of the character he played in Star Trek, Worf. Worf was a warrior, but he was also very noble and brave and those qualities seemed to fit in the Bionicle universe.”
Building The Perfect Robot
Maggie Langley, the Head of Virtual Production explains the challenge of Bionicle: The Legend Reborn. “It’s a huge story with lots of characters and lots of sets. Managing that volume of work [is tough.]” But Maggie says the narrative comes first. “Even though you can get caught up in the minutiae,” she says, “Telling the story is the main goal.”
Part of Maggie’s job was articulating the moving parts or spinners of each bionicle character. The parts spin quickly when they’re agitated, slowly when they’re relaxed and when they’re knocked out, they stop altogether. “There was a lot of concern about [the spinners] adding a level of technical difficulty to the project,” says Mark. “But Maggie was able to figure out a simple way to execute that. It’s a detail in the film that’s very noticeable and adds a certain level of authenticity to these giant metal robots—really makes you believe that there’s more going on that we can’t see.”