Frank Marshall "No CGI in Indy 4"....... YES!!!!!!!!!

Discussion in 'Lucasfilm Ltd. In-Depth Discussion' started by bluesaber70, Jul 5, 2007.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Jango10 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 22, 2002
    star 5
    Munich is more of an action/thriller/drama than an action/adventure.
  2. solojones Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2000
    star 9
    Yeah, that's not an adventure film... but point taken about the invisible CG. Those are valid uses of CG, in my opinion. There are few such valid uses :p

    -sj loves kevin spacey
  3. Gobi-1 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Dec 22, 2002
    star 5
    Casino Royale is also a film that uses a lot of invisible CGI.
  4. malducin Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2001
    star 4
    Besides Munich didn't have a ton of VFX either, most of it was real. I think you can almst count with 2 hands th number of VFX shots in the film.

    On the other hand Casino Royale or the Bourne Ultimatum are much better examples. Besides many times films with big flashy VFX also have quite a bit of invisible VFX as well.
  5. Yodas-evil-twin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 3, 2005
    star 5
    Zodiac had some pretty fantastic invisible CGI.
  6. Vortigern99 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2000
    star 5
    Munich is one of my favorite films; I saw it in the theater twice and I've probably seen it on DVD 4 or 5 times as well. I can only agree with you that it's a serious, dramatic movie. But moreover, the assassinations are staged in classic spy-thriller fashion, edited and scored to get the viewer's adrenalin going and to root for the "good guys" -- to be on the Isreali operatives' side as though they're the heroes of this exciting action/globe-trotting-thriller movie. Then near the end of the film, you come to understand that the protagonists have been experiencing a profound moral dilemma over whether these deeds, these murders they've been participating in, are righteous/morally correct -- and so it forces you to question your own emotional response to the action/adventure aspects of the film. Why am I entertained by watching scenes of horrific violence, particularly when I'm convinced the perpetrators are in the right? In that sense, then, Munich is an R-rated action movie: an adult drama (which is what I mean by 'R-rated') with elements of action/adventure/global thriller films used extremely effectively to provoke a unique audience reponse.
  7. malducin Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2001
    star 4
    I was amazed at Zodiac, especially when Cinefex came out (it came out before the movie opened in my area). It's too bad it was mostly overlooked for invisible effects although Bourne Ultimatum was a notable example of 2007. Especially the helicopter shot into the port of San Francisco, and all those shots of the 4 corners of the taxi murder (both the overhead and the subsequent shots with the police).

    Indy 4 will probably be mid-range, a few hundred VFX shots for sure.
  8. solojones Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2000
    star 9
    Oh man, Zodiac is a brilliant movie. And David Fincher always uses a lot of invisible effects (some in his earlier films like Fight Club are a bit more visible for the rougher CG). That's definitely the kind I'm ok with. I hope that's more where Indy IV tends. Although, being an action film, obviously it's going to be a bit different in nature.


    -sj loves kevin spacey
  9. malducin Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2001
    star 4
    Well Fincher is about the only only that knows how to use virtual cameras in his films, though those shots are not really meant to be invisible. But he does know how to use the technology and it shows in Zodiac (I agree a brilliant film).

    On the other hand the 2 VFX Supervisors for Indy 4, Pablo Helman and Marshall Krasser, come from a compositing background and have had their share of invisible type of work. That should tell people something.
  10. Pabawan LFL Author & Artist

    VIP
    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2002
    star 1
    So has this come out as a big "not quite" yet?
  11. Tabula Rasa Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 1998
    star 6
    Oh yeah, there's a bunch of CGI in KotCS. Frank Marshall is full of baloney.

    It even opens with a CG Paramount mole hill.
  12. Go-Mer-Tonic Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 22, 1999
    star 6
    What if Frank Marshal was speaking about CG characters and stunts?
  13. Pabawan LFL Author & Artist

    VIP
    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2002
    star 1
    The thing is, it's not the CG that's the devil. It's the pre-viz. Always the pre-viz. When you make the camera do something we know it can't, no amount of rendered polish will save that shot.

    ph
  14. Princess_Tina Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 10, 2001
    star 6
    Interesting AP story on the CGI effects in Indy 4:

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080522/ap_en_mo/film_indy_effects

    'Indiana Jones' and the computer-generated jungle
    By DERRIK J. LANG, AP Entertainment Writer

    SAN FRANCISCO - In these hallowed halls, Indiana Jones almost seems out of place.

    A banner with a two-dimensional cutout of the swashbuckling archaeologist swings through the lobby of Industrial Light and Magic, where life-size replicas of Darth Vader and Bobba Fett from "Star Wars" stand guard.

    The home of George Lucas' visual effects company is a high-tech temple to everything from the dinosaurs in "Jurassic Park" to the talking robots in "Transformers." But Indy can't take credit for the digital wizardry for which ILM has become famous over the last couple of decades.

    Not yet, anyway. That's because he hasn't been around for 19 years, a time in which special effects has mostly migrated from soundstage to server.

    The first three Indy films were gritty, sweaty and tactile affairs, largely because everything onscreen physically existed somewhere. Not so with "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" ? though that was almost the case.

    When first approaching the latest "Indy," director Steven Spielberg considered dusting off his old-school approach.

    "He thought maybe we should just go back to the way we did things before, like matte paintings on glass and things like that," said visual effects supervisor Pablo Helman. "We entertained that idea for a little bit, but we realized we could serve the story better by using our digital tools."

    That decision ultimately led to a filmmaking innovation that brings the random reactions of a virtual world to the big screen, giving more control to ILM's computers than ever before.

    To the children romping outside at ILM's in-house daycare located just past the lobby, the notion of a digital "environment" being responsible for much of what's onscreen will probably seem quaint someday. But to the adult audiences who've glimpsed the latest Indy escapade, it's a big part of the reason this one looks so different from Jones' last crusade.

    Helman, who previously worked with Spielberg on "Munich" and "War of the Worlds," was tasked with creating realistic-yet-fantastic environments and creatures for "Crystal Skull," which finds Jones traipsing from New England to New Mexico, Peru and the Amazon. Working on the "Indy" franchise for the first time was a daunting task for the low-key effects guru.

    "It's horrifying to work on a movie that has this many fans, but at the same time, it's an opportunity and a challenge," Helman told The Associated Press at the ILM offices less than a week before its release. "I think we were all very, very respectful of the other three movies but also to the fans. All the effects work that we're doing are completely reality-based."

    That is if your reality includes a blooming atomic mushroom cloud, seemingly endless Area 51 warehouse, vicious monkey army, the City of Gold, thousands of man-eating ants and sundry otherworldly things. All those locales and critters were created by Helman and his ILM team for "Crystal Skull," making up the film's 450 effects shots ? not quite as many as the 600-plus in "Transformers," but more than you might expect from a flesh-and-blood character from the 1950s.

    About 300 artists and editors worked for eight months in post-production on a high-tech computer network at ILM's offices inside the Presidio of San Francisco, a long way from the "Raiders of the Lost Ark" and "Temple of Doom" days, when "Indiana Jones" special effects mostly consisted of miniature sets and a few blue-screen mash-ups.

    "The only reason why they weren't using computer-generated effects back then is because they weren't invented yet, but they were using the most up-to-date technology at the time," said Helman, who finished his work on "Crystal Skull" in mid-April. "So it only follows that we would do the same thing now."

    In the film's biggest action sequence, Jones and company battle Ru
  15. malducin Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2001
    star 4
    No, in the original quotes he was referring to the whole film (at least implied). Either Marshall didn't know what he was talking about, though a bit doubtfulgiven his experience, or it was more or just saying stuff for the press (who would be clueless about this point), Joe Schmo and to calm the fanboys. It was even obvious from the first trailer that CG would be used for stunts.

    That not previz, you're referring to what is commonly referred to as virtual cameras which few directors know how to use, but Hollywood overuses them since the Matrix films.

    Pre-viz is the stage where the film is previsualized, via storyboards, videomatics, animatics etc. Nowadays it'susually done with anmatics. It doesn't imply a virtual camera, that decission rests with the filmmakers (mainly the director). Companies like Pixel Liberation Front even have representations of real physical cameras so that they an previz complex camera moves on the set.

    It doesn't always work. Last year John Knoll complained that for certain shot in Pirates 3 they got some previz that was cheated making a shot more difficult to shoot on the stage.
  16. Go-Mer-Tonic Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 22, 1999
    star 6
    Did he imply it, or did you assume it?

    Producer Frank Marshall explained this approach to the New Haven Register: "Steven is very aware of the process and we're not cheating with CG (computer graphics) at all. It keeps the B movie feel."
    />

    You guys have to stop holding other people responsible for the way you read into their statements./>/>
  17. Pabawan LFL Author & Artist

    VIP
    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2002
    star 1
    That not previz, you're referring to what is commonly referred to as virtual cameras which few directors know how to use, but Hollywood overuses them since the Matrix films.

    In my brevity, I wasn't clear, but basically that's what I was getting at. These opportunities to produced incredibly manicured, gimmicky shots usually surface in previz, and you can tell when a director has really embraced -- for better or worse -- such tools.

    ph
  18. Jedi_Reject_Jesse Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 26, 2004
    star 7
    Maybe. There was a whole article in the San Francisco Chronicle about Indy IV's reliance on real Stunt people rather than digital doubles.
  19. malducin Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2001
    star 4
    I completely agree. The only thing is I don't know why people were worried in the first place. After all Spielberg doesn't use gimmicky camera moves.

    I went back to the original article, which is no longer available on the original site, to refresh my memory. He did more than imply it, he said it, though what the implications were a bit more nebulous since it's a short quote.

    CG definately means visual effects, no way about it and in todays world it applies extensively to stunt work. Now some people extended that to mean the VFX were going to use only old stuff: glass matte paintings, optical printers, stop motion, miniatures, etc. Which of course is ridiculous (except for miniatures). And even if most of the stunts are real anyways CG would still be used. In most cases yo use it to remove safety wires, enhance ractical effects, comp actors into dangerous stunts, etc. Which indeed was the case. Digital cameras doesn't mean CG at all anyway, there have been many features shot on digital with neglible amount of CG, like Collateral and Apocalypto. Marshall indeed meant VFX when talking about CG.

    As I said it's not that Marshall might have been wrong but sometimes the press or the interviewee simplifies stuff so much that what is printed doesn't really mean much or turns out to be way off mark. That quote btw was done during principal photography, I assure you that by that time they pretty much knew there was going to be quite a bit of "CG". That's why you have to take these lightweight stories always with a bit of salt when mentioning the more technical aspects.
  20. zombie Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 4, 1999
    star 4
    I don't know what Frank Marshal was talking about, but there entire jeep chase through the amazon was a ten minute bluescreen setpiece. It wasn't that it was just CG, but that it was totally unrealistic. Especially with Mutt stradling two jeeps spread-eagle, whilst getting hit in the ball and still fighting. The tarzan thing was the worst thing in the franchise but they could have done it more realistically with real stunt-man swinging through trees, that actually gets done sometimes in hong kong action films and it looks real because it is real, but instead we get close-up of Mutt as he unrealistically flies around like Tarzan. The entire scene was bad, but I think the way they filmed it only embellished the un-reality of it all. That was a big disappointment. Not because they used CG but because they didn't have to.
  21. Captain_Typho Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2003
    star 5
    The Tarzan scene is the worst single scene in the history of the franchise, and while I thought a few of the digital effects in KOTCS were ok, the tarzan scene and chase scene were not among them.
  22. Icebreaker Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 20, 2001
    star 4
    When first approaching the latest "Indy," director Steven Spielberg considered dusting off his old-school approach.

    "He thought maybe we should just go back to the way we did things before, like matte paintings on glass and things like that," said visual effects supervisor Pablo Helman. "We entertained that idea for a little bit, but we realized we could serve the story better by using our digital tools."


    This would have been brilliant. If he would have done something like this my respect for him would have gone up even more.

    -matthew
  23. zombie Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 4, 1999
    star 4
    That would have been a neat experiment. Like when Coppola made Dracula only using techniques that were invented before 1920.
  24. JohnWesleyDowney Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2004
    star 5
    I thought it was a lot of fun. It's an action-adventure movie, you know. Indy films have always referenced old action-adventure movies, and certainly Tarzan is part of that genre.

    Keep in mind, in earlier installments, our heroes jumped out of a plane in a life raft, and survived, Indy traveled strapped to a submarine, and did all kinds of craziness.

    Over the top is what the series is about: That's why the opening song sets the tone in TEMPLE OF DOOM, it's "Anything Goes", which is brilliant because that song was of that era.

    I keep my mind in a "I'm a kid again and this is a fun cool movie to watch" mode, I'm not planning on writing a doctoral thesis on verisimillitude on it.
  25. odj_310388 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 5
    I think the problem is that you have to keep your mind in it for this new movie. If you don't it becomes not fun.

    "No CGI in Indy 4"

    So they set off a real atomic bomb for the movie then? Sweet.
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.