Goose the cat is a scene-stealer in Captain Marvel, but apparently most of the scenes were stolen by computer-generated images. We've already heard from the trainer who coached four different cats -- mostly a little guy named Reggie -- to play the role of Goose on set. But Captain Marvel visual effects supervisor Chris Townsend said most of the shots actually used in the MCU film were done through effects company Trixter, even beyond just the obvious Flerken fun.
There are about over 100 shots of the cat in the film, 70 or 80 of them are CG, including the shots, obviously, where the tentacles come out of the face.
Visual effects supervisor Chris Townsend told HuffPost the CG version of Goose looked so realistic, even directors Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck didn't recognize real from fake. Townsend explained some of the times they felt they needed to go with a CG version, including when working around star Brie Larson's (Carol Danvers) allergy to cats:
Whenever Brie’s holding a cat, almost always it’s a CG cat, and a lot of the times when the cat is on Nick Fury’s lap or is wandering around, it’s CG as well. There’s a lot of stuff that I would look at as a viewer and think, ‘Well, surely they could’ve got a cat to do that.’ In reality, no, we couldn’t get the cat to perform correctly in the same takes we got the actors to perform.
Divas! Chris Townsend did praise the cats and the cat trainers, but he's right that there's only so much you can demand from a cat -- especially one that probably doesn't even have profit participation, so what's their motivation, really?
Pet trailer Ursula Brauner had said, of the four cats used, a dude named Reggie was probably in about 70% of the Goose scenes. But Chris Townsend is saying about 20-30% of what's seen on screen was CG. So it sounds like Reggie didn't really get that much screen time. (Call your agent, man.)
The cats did spend a lot of time on set, though, and that's useful for the VFX team. Apparently Ben Mendelsohn was very patient with the cats, to get them used to the Skrulls. Samuel L. Jackson (Nick Fury) gave mixed reactions to working with the cats, but the trainer said he was one of the best people working with them, and that the cats would go right up to him.
Goose is a character out of Marvel Comics, but on the page the Flerken "cat" was called Chewie. The movie decided to change the name to have a reference that was more era-specific to pilot Carol Danvers.
Captain Marvel is hurtling toward $1 billion at the global box office as we speak, even though it was just dethroned this weekend by new horror film Us. The MCU has more treats ahead in Avengers: Endgame on April 26, and right now we are just crossing our Flerken fingers that Goose -- CGI or not -- has a role in that story. Keep up with everything headed to the big screen with our 2019 movie schedule.