Fake or real? Viral video shows giant octopus smashing SUV in Qatar parking lot

While many on social media mistook the video for real, some were quick to say the clip was CGI-generated


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Published: Fri 6 Oct 2023, 3:19 PM

Last updated: Fri 6 Oct 2023, 3:37 PM

A video showing a giant octopus crawling onto the roof of a car and damaging its windshield has gone viral on social media with a claim that the incident occurred in a Qatar parking lot.

The clip begins with a huge octopus entering a parking lot, surrounded by cars. The octopus proceeds to climb onto a white SUV, using its long tentacles to exert pressure and damage the vehicle.

While many on social media mistook the video for real, some were quick to say the clip was CGI-generated. And it turns out they weren't wrong. The video indeed is a product of CGI and not a real-life event.

The claims were further debunked by analysing the car's license plate, which displays "@ghost3dee" instead of a standard vehicle registration number format for Qatar. Further investigation on Instagram using the username "@ghost3dee" leads to the profile of Alex Z, a CGI artist based in Qatar.

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In his Instagram bio, Alex is described as a "CG Generalist" who utilises various animation tools like Houdini, Max, ZBrush, and Substance, to create imaginative visuals, confirming that the video is indeed CGI.

In the viral video shared on Alex's Instagram profile, he provided insights into how he created the video using CGI. He mentioned working on a Churro simulation using various solvers and techniques, including nested point deforms, fake RBD (Rigid Body Dynamics) vellum tricks, and extensive utilisation of vellum constraints.

Alex also used Tet fibre constraints to compress tentacles and crush the proxy soft body car, creating a dynamic effect. Alex emphasised his procedural approach, avoiding keyframes and utilising sim checkpoints to facilitate efficient adjustments without re-simulation. The most time-consuming aspect of the project was the compositing stage, where he transitioned from using After Effects (AE) to Nuke due to its efficiency and stability compared to AE's compatibility issues caused by numerous plugins.

People on the artist's social media profile praised his talent and expressed their initial impression of the video.

A person said, "Man, this is crazy! The movement gives me the shivers lol."

"Man you should go to fix Marvel," wrote another user.

"You are a legend. I like your octopus. You should make a real toy of it. People can buy and support you," a comment read.

In today's world, CGI (Computer-Generated Imagery) and AI (Artificial Intelligence) have revolutionised various industries. CGI enables the creation of stunning visuals and effects in movies, advertising, and gaming, enhancing realism and engaging audiences like never before. And the viral video from the Qatar parking lot was just an indication of how realistic a product you can create using CGI and AI.


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