Speculation Episode 7 Special effects: What do you expect/hope for?

Discussion in 'Star Wars: Episode VII and Beyond (Archive)' started by Lee_, Nov 18, 2012.

  1. gregvader123 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 16, 2012
    star 2
    My point is the PT didn't wow...at least when compared to the OT. Nobody had really seen anything quite like the effects of ANH. It was innovative. The PT, by comparison, was not. Jurassic Park owns the honor of showing a new tech to the masses. Lucas himself has said he waited until the tech was advanced enough for him to tackle the PT and Jurassic Park was showcase for that advancement with the PT following its lead, so-to-speak. Yes it improved upon things and wowed people in the sense of "yeah it looks cool and intricate" but it didn't innovate, it wasn't special. The OT did and was.

    I pretty much agree with everything that's been said on both sides of the argument for effects in the ST. I really think that real stages looked more realistic then a purely CGI ones. You also have to take into account what the actors said about the experience. Some voiced complaints for what I guess would be described as lack of human interaction emotion and soul. I think most people would agree that the best would be a fair mix of "real effects" and CGI, with the CGI being a complimenting element instead of the whole damn thing.
  2. Mystery Roach Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 10, 2004
    star 4
    For the most part, I really like the CG in the PT. I can appreciate the particular look of CG in the same way I can appreciate the stop-motion work of Harryhausen etc. It doesn't have to look exactly real to be artistically interesting to me. The only times I thought the prequels went too far were in certain completely CG shots. I think it was John Knoll who said that he prefers to have something real in the frame in order to bring the realism of the effects work up to that level, and I do agree with this philosophy. The one thing that really kind of bugs me in the PT is the complete lack of real clone trooper costumes. I find that to be the single most jarring aspect of going from ROTS to ANH. I can really feel the difference there right away, and it hurts my ability to feel the connection between the two trilogies just a little bit.
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  3. DarthMak Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 4, 2001
    star 5
    Completely agree. It wasn't necessary to have CG clones, except in large battle shots where a hundred were on screen. They are distracting to look at in up close shots with other characters. It got better in ROTS but not perfect.
  4. sidious1000 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jan 12, 2001
    star 1
    Puppets, rubber suits, real sets and real locations is the only way to go. Who needs exotic locations and characters and fluff like that. Please put the fantasy back into fantasy.

    Just imagine how much better the acting in Coruscant would have beenif the filming had taken place in Hong Kong or New York. Puppet Yoda should have been out in the field so that the actors could connect with something solid while acting, It also felt like Mcdiarmid was talking to thin air during the senate fight, I got no emotion from him at all. All this because of horrible evil cgi

    So i say get rid of all that unrealistic emotionless cgi crap and make Star Wars feel modern, realistic and alive.
  5. TryWhistlingThis Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 9, 2012
    star 3
    This will never happen for various reasons, but for the space battles, i'd love to see them return to the use of models rather than 100% CGI. Granted, the use of CGI is inevitable, even in films like 007. But i'd love to see them combine actual models with sparing use of CGI so it becomes an effect rather than the tone of the overall scene.
  6. Lars_Muul Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 2, 2000
    star 6
    There are no space battles in Star Wars that are 100% CGI.

    I expect state-of-the-art effects - the best of the best.
    I hope that they'll push the boundaries, as is common practice with these films.





    "Anything is possible, Kathy, listen to me..."
    /LM
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  7. LANDO_ROCKS Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 28, 2002
    star 4
    The space battles are the one area where the CGI of the PT didn't bother me much, it was the huge set piece land battles and things like the gawd awful fruit passing scene which looked horrible.
  8. Lee_ Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 3, 2012
    star 4
    Isn't that overstating the case?
  9. sidious1000 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jan 12, 2001
    star 1
    Yeah most definitely overstating it.

    I liked the fruit, it looked juicy.
  10. ezekiel22x Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 9, 2002
    star 4
    I want what Avatar was hyped as: crazily advanced next gen 3D CGI that truly does change the game as much as color vs. black and white.

    Save the more realistic visual design for Willow 2.
  11. ShaneP Ex-Mod Officio

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
    star 6
    You ever see Mission Impossible 3? ILM shot some plate footage in Singapore and then combined that with Cruise stunt footage on a minimal set jumping off the top of the building. It looked absolutely photoreal.

    So I get what you're saying. You shoot actors on location and then enhance that footage with matte or digital set extensions.

    Here's the issue with that: clearances and cost. It's expensive. They could do it if they had a small guerilla unit with just a few key actors or maybe even doubles and shot stuff.

    But I do agree: these films need to take the next step in visuals. They need to be what the prequels promised to be.

    I think what you're asking for is something more tactile and less of a clear line between studio/CG background location/CG background.
    Last edited by ShaneP, Nov 21, 2012
  12. Lee_ Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 3, 2012
    star 4
    Somehow I don't think cost is much of an issue in this.
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  13. ShaneP Ex-Mod Officio

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
    star 6
    Speaking of, how much were the budgets for John Carter and The Avengers?
    Last edited by ShaneP, Nov 21, 2012
  14. Lee_ Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 3, 2012
    star 4
    I know John Carter had a budget of 250 million, but doesn't have the built-in sales of SW; I bet they spend at least that much on Episode 7.
  15. stellarmagic01 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2012
    star 3
    Anyone else hope for more squibs and smoke effects... the Prequel blaster fights look too clean compared to the OT, lets have some more practical effects in the films.
  16. gregvader123 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 16, 2012
    star 2
    I wonder if maybe different people have different "sensitivities" so to speak, to CGI. The way you described the clone troopers is how I feel about almost all of the CGI in the PT. At least the ones that were full characters or vehicles. Despite the fact that the AT-AT's in ESB were stop motion, I felt they looked more like realistic war machines then the ones that were in the PT. The walkers in the PT moved more fluidly but there was still something "off" about them. They just looked fake. Maybe it's just me.
  17. Mystery Roach Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 10, 2004
    star 4
    I like the mixture of techniques used to create the aliens in the PT, from the old style rubber masks to animatronics to CG, and I think they all have their place in the Star Wars universe. When it comes to human characters and vehicles, however, I do prefer a little more realism. I agree that models (and the stop motion walkers) look better and more realistic for the most part, but I understand the practical reasons for shifting to more and more CG as the prequels progressed. I just wish that more often there was something real in the foreground to better fool the eye into accepting the reality of it as well as to help bring the level of realism in the rest of the shot up to that level. That said, I would absolutely love to see a CG AT-AT battle done on a much larger scale than they were able to do with the stop motion models in the OT.
  18. gregvader123 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 16, 2012
    star 2
    The AT-AT's were my all-time favorite as a child. I would love to see that battle as well.
    Doug625 likes this.
  19. ShaneP Ex-Mod Officio

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
    star 6
    I will second that as long as it fits what they're doing. You dont want to do practical just for the sake of practical just like you dont want to do CG just for the sake of it.
    Last edited by ShaneP, Nov 21, 2012
  20. ShaneP Ex-Mod Officio

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
    star 6
    No. It's not just you. I think though that had more to do with the fact there was almost no location plate photography in the Geonosis battle. It was all CG with some liva action actors(Mace, Ki Adi) comped in.
    I would prefer the layered approach: start with a live action background or set piece with live action actors acting in that space. Then enhance and comp in the CG and miniature stuff.
    Some of the best vfx in the PT were, in fact, a blend of miniatures, background plates, and set pieces.
    gregvader123 likes this.
  21. gregvader123 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 16, 2012
    star 2
    LOTR did a good job of supplementing real actor "troops" with CGI ones to make the armies. The screen wasn't awash with CGI.

    Yeah the scenes with Mace and the troopers jumped out at me. The worst example I can think of is the scene in ROTS when one of the troopers (Cody, I think) removes his helmet. Jarringly fake.
  22. Mystery Roach Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 10, 2004
    star 4
    Yeah that's part of my issue with the clone troopers as well. It's pretty clear they were CG just for the sake of it. In what universe does it make any practical sense to stick an actor's head on a normally proportioned CG body? Surely constructing a few suits of armor would have been easier, more cost effective, and better looking in the end. Watching the ROTS blu-ray on my 70" television, it's very apparent that their head movement is seperate from that of their bodies, and it looks pretty funky. It's like Lucas just wanted to be able to boast that he never had to build a single trooper outfit for the PT, as if people would gasp and say they were shocked because they looked so real. Usually I stick up for all of GL's decisions, but even I can't get behind that one.
  23. A Chorus of Disapproval New Films Riot Deterrent

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Aug 19, 2003
    star 7
    My biggest hope for the FX of the next few films is for the production to not ever reveal 'who, what, or where' is going to be created using CGI, so that nitpickers cannot have the advantage of knowing what "looks so fake! ZOMG!" based solely on the criteria that they were told in advance what technology was utilized in creating them. Some was obvious, some was not. But, since we were told in advance and shown set pics of greenscreen, we could all pretend that every single pixel was obvious. Let's make nerdraging a little more challenging this time, LFL...
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  24. ShaneP Ex-Mod Officio

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
    star 6
    Well, the clone troopers as CG thing was a bad idea when you consider that Ben Snow, ILM vfx supervisor on the Geonosis sequence, stated in interviews he practically begged George to let him build even one suit for lighting reference and it was turned down.
    When your fx supes are telling you to dial back the CG, maybe you should listen.

    But ILM has really made strides, great strides, in non-Star Wars films of the last 10 years. Davey Jones is better than any CG character in the PT. I remember watching that on DVD not long ago thinking "That's how Star War's CG characters should have been". Can you imagine if a Quarren/Squid Face SW character had looked that good?

    In the words of one of the Ghostbusters: We have the tools and we have the talent!

    ...or something like that.
    Last edited by ShaneP, Nov 21, 2012
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  25. gregvader123 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 16, 2012
    star 2
    Pure speculation on my part, but do you think Lucas' over-reliance on CGI is the result of the frustration he experienced with the "real" effects on the OT, especially ANH?