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True Blood

How Do True Blood Vampire Fangs Work?

You Asked, We Answered!

Credit: John P. Johnson/HBO    

Nothing’s hotter than lying in the bed of a truck, blasting Tay Tay Swift, and watching your vampire girlfriend pop a fang erection because of your rippling six pack. But just how do True Blood vamp fangs work — and more importantly how can we get in on that toothy fun?

The Emmy award winning visual effects team at Zoic Studios are responsible for True Blood’s computer generated special effects, including the fangs we’ve come to know and love. Jon Massey, Zoic’s Visual FX Supervisor, says that the physical aspects of vampire teeth were based on rattlesnake fangs, so much so that the team worked closely with a wild animal trainer.

“We created fangs that actually lie flat along the roof of the mouth and than click into place when a vampire is in danger or aroused or ready to feed, much like a rattlesnake’s fangs click into place,” Alan Ball explains.

“We actually created a model of teeth with showing how the fangs click in and click out. And we put the fangs not with the forefront teeth between them but with only two because it worked better for the physiology. I like that because it looks different and it’s not like the classic thing and there is a sound that it makes when they click, like a weapon being loaded. It really works well for the show.”

Zoic’s Visual Effects Supervisor says, “If you watch the show, you may never actually know they are retracting or extending their fangs in an arc with their real teeth going up inside their mouth. We built it so that it is subtle and viewers may never notice it, because it looks really natural. It’s all done digitally, there’s nothing practical about the effect … The actors don’t have the fangs in when they are performing so they need to really think about the process and practical jaw movement when it’s happening in the scene.

True Blood’s fangs might be created with special effects, but you can score yourself a pair of retractable fangs for just $12.95 a pop!

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03.31.2012 / 02:52 AM EDT by Mehera Bonner
Related: True Blood, Gossip, Vampires

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