June 20, 2014

How to Pull off a Simple Teleportation Effect Using After Effects & a Very Still Actor

There are several techniques that you can use to pull off a good teleportation effect. Most understand the basics -- how to splice two (or three) different shots together, having your actors freeze while your teleporter gets into position. However, there are a few polishing moves that you might not know about that could really up your SFX game, as well as sell your effect. The always entertaining and enlightening crew at Film Riot has a brand new tutorial that shares a few of these tricks, including how to position your teleporter, what kinds of visual and sound effects you can use, and how to put it all together in After Effects.

There's really no need to ask how this trick is done, because it's pretty easy to figure out. The teleporter is filmed in one position, and then another, and the two sequences are spliced together to make it look as though it was one shot. In the case of this tutorial from Film Riot, host Ryan Connolly explains how this was done all in a single shot -- his teleporter performs his first action (pretending to jump over a banister, through a window, etc.), then performs his second (the landing) in a different location. Pretty simple. The only potentially complicated thing about this is using After Effects to add a smoke effect (or whichever effect you prefer), which helps sell the trick. (Connolly walks you through that process in the tutorial.)

A couple of things to keep in mind, though, if you really want to make the effect convincing is to add real elements to your scene -- in Film Riot's case, they used another actor that they asked to remain still while their teleporter got into his second position. Also, allow your teleporter to interact with the world around them -- to affect it. As you'll see in the video, when the Film Riot teleporter teleports through the car, when he arrives on the other side the car sways back and forth. This gives the impression that, yes, he was moving through space and time, and yes, he affected his environment, and no, we didn't see him do it. Successful teleportation!

Check out the tutorial below to get all of the details on how to pull this effect off. (Also, it needs to be said -- that bullet dodge bit just killed me. No one can ever say that a Film Riot tutorial is boring -- because they're all hilarious -- and educational.)


Do you have any tips on how to pull this effect off? Feel free to share any suggestions in the comments below.

[via Film Riot]

Your Comment


FilmRiot rules

June 20, 2014 at 1:21PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM


If you want to learn basic VFX, I would suggest bypassing Film Riot and going straight to the source of their tutorial content, videocopilot.net.

June 20, 2014 at 4:02PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM


I have watched Film Riot for 2 years now, in fact they are responsible for bringing to light that filmmaking is accessible to anyone these days. That being said - they do not pull all of their tutorials from Video Co-Pilot. Ryan creates his own effect techniques more often than not and encourages people to make them their own.

Just felt like people who see this comment should get both sides of the opinion spectrum.

June 23, 2014 at 8:53AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM


Fair enough! I haven't watched all of their videos so I'm sure you're right.

June 23, 2014 at 12:31PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM


Also, I really enjoyed your website and work Luke!

June 23, 2014 at 7:00PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM


Thats is such bullshit if youd actually watch the show you would know better

June 28, 2014 at 8:28PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM


pretty cool, just finished a short fan webisode T.R.A.C.E. A Doctor Who Fan Film and episode 1 (on youtube now since May 7th) has a lot of teleportation going on, the one thing I learned was to add a bit of a warp/bulge effect, small shake making it nicer looking.

Not to mention if you have some foreground objects, it will make it look cooler :) (a lot more masking to do in post within AE but worth time time) :)

June 20, 2014 at 6:59PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM


Film Riot is the Best, Entertaining and you can learn some neat tricks. I never miss an episode.

June 21, 2014 at 11:55AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM


Good work if there where a few more Fx bods that had the skill in this Vid.
But shout from the roof tops "Shoot with a LOCKED OFF camera" and add follow pans in post ! also keep the amount of electronic 'zoom' for the complete shot.

June 26, 2014 at 12:46PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM