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The Tomorrow War - White Spikes Design

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I had the great pleasure to design the vicious White Spikes for 'The Tomorrow War'. (Watch it on Amazon Prime Video)

Back in 2019, I worked a few weeks with director Chris McKay and production designer Peter Wenham on the film. To my surprise, I was told at the very end that other designers (some I know and admire) already had previously worked on various alien designs, and ultimately it was my design that got picked for the film.

The White Spikes had to be a powerful enemy. Director Chris McKay described the White Spikes to me as vicious creatures that attack and eat everything in sight. He asked for a compelling design that conveyed the hunger and intelligence of these creatures. Additionally, the White Spikes needed to have different abilities such as fast swimming and flying. It was important that they were agile and able to move extremely fast. It was my job to translate all this information into one cohesive design.

Because there was no clear description of the White Spikes, I gave Chris a few different options to choose from in the beginning. In this early stage, it was all about brainstorming and coming up with interesting ideas.  

In order to make them more threatening, Chris felt they needed to have some kind of an offensive weapon, and asked for a plausible way of how the White Spikes could shoot at their targets. I came up with the idea of spike-shooting-tentacles and presented the idea in a sketch. Chris and everyone else loved that idea and wanted me to develop that particular design further. I think it became one of the more memorable features of the design.  

After that sketch got approved, I created a 3D model and a few renderings that were presented to the studio.

Big thanks to Chris McKay, Rob Cowan, James E. Price, Peter Wenham, Randy Starr, Amazon and Chris Pratt!
Also big shoutout to the artists and animators who brought them to life: Weta Digital, Luma Pictures, Framestore, Method Studios and Spectral Motion (for their on-set animatronic).

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Comments38
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Flamereaper0001's avatar

Mind if I ask what was you're overall opinion of the movie?

shadowdollcat's avatar

You did a fantastic job, with designing them they are quite the creatures☺️☺️☺️

kristoonz's avatar

I’m currently watching the movie and I immediately looked to DeviantArt to find art on the fierce Whitespikes. I didn’t expect to find the designer himself here, but wow I’m glad I did. Great job!! Scary, vicious, and ferocious indeed. What’s unclear to me tho is if there are reasonable? I understand they’re intelligent, but it’s odd to me that they are devoid of emotion and only attack and eat….a very primitive way of being for an alien who was able to travel to earth and dominate it.

Krookodile553's avatar

This beastie is legitimately the best part of the film

i wanna fuck it

manati20's avatar
girlonwantedposters's avatar

Literally just got finished watching the film not even 5 minutes ago. I am absolutely in love with their design and am disappointed that we did not get to see more of the. I'd have honestly loved a deeper dive into what they looked like within the film.

My brain immediately went into "How can I craft this into a cosplay" moments after seeing them. The sounds they make and the way they communicate was delicious to hear and I simply want to just know everything about them.


On another note, I was confused at their ability to swim at all let alone fast- unless of course they have some kind of webbing between all those digits and clawed toes. However, I will give a pass on the gliding as that seems plausible for what we were given during the film.


I love this creature and The Tomorrow War is now one of my top if not -the- top creature film favorite on my list.


Absolutely magnificent work.

Looks very cuddly and warm :')

A lot of spikes. Those are my only complaint. They'd get in the way of cuddling and I just can't have that. Gonna get those removed like a dogs tail when it's a pup. Don't know if the vets take that kind of critter tho.

Matrick22's avatar

this looks like the monster love child between the Cloverfield monster and the weird monster/alien creature from the first love, death and robot episode

evilsmiley2's avatar

absolutely loved the creature design in that film. Right away when I saw them I thought it looked like your style. My only complaint is that I didn't get to animate them :) haha

AmeliasGaming103's avatar

oh my goodness! I absolutely loved the movie! especially the alien design, it really inspired me to further improve my own alien conceptsHappy so thank you!! <3

AtrociousNightmare's avatar

AMAZING creature design! Well done!

Just watched the movie with my family this week. It was a fun movie to sit and talk about for a while. The aliens were especially fun to theorize about.

manati20's avatar

buen trabajo esta brutal

YikYik's avatar

While not the best movie in the world, the creatures were great looking and very cool. And now I know why. :D

RavenCorona's avatar

Absolutely wonderful design.

crappy movie but good creature design

cicakkia's avatar

Holy. I watched the movie few days ago. And was hooked by the monster/alien design. Turns out you the one did this the amazing job. Congratulation there.

AvalanchJML's avatar

Felicitaciones por tu diseño te sigo desde hace años porque me gusta tu trabajo. Esperamos que sigan ocupando tu trabajo más adelante.

AussieRoadkill's avatar

oooooooh i adore their little mantis legs, love seeing insect biology used wherever it can be. Also felt very ant-like with their nests and queen

NecroTechno's avatar

I don't care what the critics say, I frikking *love* that design. There is literally no part of it that looks harmless. I can definitely believe these to be "world-ender"-class predators. Now if we were to pit them against xenomorphs....

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