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This paper presents a new physically-based 3D facial model based on anatomical knowledge which provides high fidelity for facial expression animation while optimizing the computation. Our facial model has a multilayer biomechanical structure, incorporating a physically-based approximation to facial skin tissue, a set of anatomically-motivated facial muscle actuators, and underlying skull structure. In contrast to existing mass-spring-damper (MSD) facial models, our dynamic skin model uses the nonlinear springs to directly simulate the nonlinear visco-elastic behavior of soft tissue and a new kind of edge repulsion spring is developed to prevent collapse of the skin model. Different types of muscle models have been developed to simulate distribution of the muscle force applied on the skin due to muscle contraction. The presence of the skull advantageously constrain the skin movements, resulting in more accurate facial deformation and also guides the interactive placement of facial muscles. The governing dynamics are computed using a local semiimplicit ODE solver. In the dynamic simulation, an adaptive refinement automatically adapts the local resolution at which potential inaccuracies are detected depending on local deformation. The method, in effect, ensures the required speedup by concentrating computational time only where needed while ensuring realistic behavior within a predefined error threshold. This mechanism allows more pleasing animation results to be produced at a reduced computational cost.