Here are the reference images from the movie.
These images are exhibiting the typical look of the movie.
The followings are the characteristics that can be found in the reference images.
- Desaturated / bleached
- only a few colors are noticeable : Red, turquoise, goldish yellow
- high contrast
- Heavy grains ( in the midtone only )
- glowing sky
These can easily be achieved by color grading and a few basic filters
I used the following render image and basically used Magic Bullet Looks and Mojo to replicate the 300 look.
Fist, I started out with adding glow effect mainly to the background stormy sky.
Then I used Magic Bullet Looks to add a series of effects and color correction.
I set the overall brightness and tone and applied the film grain, a bit of a vignette and chromatic aberration.
Finally, Magic Bullet Mojo is added to colorize. This is the main tool used to mimic the tonality of 300.
Mojo can create a bleached and contrasty tone and also warm the bright area and cool the dark area.
original vs final
The color grading and the post effects can make a dramatic change in look.