Memo to George - An extra in a clonetrooper suit is 1000% better than any CGI creation

Discussion in 'Attack of the Clones' started by SoftballWizard388, May 19, 2002.

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  1. Luke_Clone Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jun 15, 2002
    star 4
    "Are you talking about the background in that scene? Cuz that archway is real; it was also used in Lawrence of Arabia "

    Actually, Import, I think he is referring to the ships flying in the background not to mention the CGI tweaks which were applied to the walls, arches, etc. in that scene to make it more "Naboo" looking or whatever. :)
  2. Grand_Moff_Jawa Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 31, 2001
    star 5
    Doesn't CGI stand for Cool George Idea? Let him have his fun. I still liked the movie, even with the fake CGI at times.
  3. robertyodarugenstein Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Mar 9, 2002
    star 4
    On opening night at the theater that our fan force group went to we had a guy running around telling people that he was a Clontrooper and signing pictures of one with his name on it. What an fool.
  4. Import_Jedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 20, 2001
    star 6
    Actually, Import, I think he is referring to the ships flying in the background not to mention the CGI tweaks which were applied to the walls, arches, etc. in that scene to make it more "Naboo" looking or whatever.

    Don't make me punch you in the face :_|


    If THAT was possible :p
  5. Luke_Clone Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jun 15, 2002
    star 4
    I speak the truth! :)

    If you've watched the docs on the TPM DVD you will see John Knoll in Caserta (sp?) Palace talking about how George wants this and that changed... they did the same thing with the exterior shots in the courtyard scene for AOTC. :) Lucas is a control freak... even McCallum said as much at SWC2. He approves the designs of everything from the doorknobs to the silverware in AOTC... some stuff gets past him but most of it he approved of. :)
  6. The Flying Dutchman Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jun 4, 2000
    star 4
    *Actually, Import, I think he is referring to the ships flying in the background not to mention the CGI tweaks which were applied to the walls, arches, etc. in that scene to make it more "Naboo" looking or whatever.*

    Uhm well it was the CGI tweeks applied to the walls,ect - sorry :)

    Still Even if the Arch is real then the backgroud (Naboo) is bloody beautiful. As you can see I can't see the difference between real and fake :D

  7. BlueMules Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 3
    Flying Dutchman, do you happen to be a swimming fan as well?

    As I recall, there is a Dutch swimmer ( Pieter VDH)whose nickname is Flying Dutchman.
  8. Darthkarma Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Aug 30, 2000
    star 4


    Of course he's a control freak! Just about every great filmmaker is a control freak! It's their job to be in charge and guide the production. :)
  9. dmodog Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Mar 1, 1999
    george lucas is a control freak.

    george lucas is in it for the money.

    these comments really contradict eachother. it just shows that people just want to find anything bad about george lucas.

    and besides, directors can't be loose about things. a director approves and disapproves things in movies. the director is in charge of everytthing about a movie. they are SUPPOSED to be control freaks.
  10. Sciwalker Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    May 31, 2002
    star 1
    DmoDog says:
    okay, here's a challenge. show me one scene/shot in the entire movie that could have been better done without cgi. hopefully this will actually help you think about something for once.

    I think that is missing his point.

    The point being that if the CGI isn't going to be completely believable, you don't do it.

    On the pear. I don't think the problem was the floating, but the biting of "nothing." Took some people out of the film.

    We've had the examples of what Spielberg did with Jaws. By not showing a bad effect, he was forced to do other things to create suspense. A lot of that factored on characterization.

    He can put a CGI shark in there now, but it would destroy that movie.

    I like Clones, but I don't like that Star Wars has become a platform for showing off CGI effects.

    What Spielberg did in Jaws, George Lucas did in the Original Trilogy. He didn't have great special effects, so he showed them briefly, with lots and lots of cuts and created a tight movie by his approach in editing it.

    We go through asteroid fields in Empire and Clones.

    Can anyone out there seriously make the claim that Clones' asteroid sequence was better? It LOOKED prettier, because it was CGI. But it wasn't the exciting bit of filmmaking that Empire's asteroid chase was.

    There was tension, suspense, action and drama in the Empire sequence.

    Perhaps the Clones asteroid sequence fails because we know, from the OT, that Obi-Wan has to survive. But I think it fails by comparison for other reasons too. Looked better, but wasn't better filmmaking.

    Lucas said way back, "A special effect without a story is a pretty boring thing."

    Some of the things in this Prequel Trilogy seem to be special effects for their own sake. You can listen to Lucas and McCallum talk about it, how hard it is to do it.

    The guys work so hard to create these images, and they are being put in because of the hard work, NOT because they make the story move forward.

    In Menace, one glaring example is the Naboo fighter being shot on takeoff and doing the Wile E. Coyote collapse to the surface. Totally unnecessary.

    In Star Wars, we saw the same kind of scene with Red Leader's crash. But that creates drama and tension because we knew it puts Luke on the spot, we'd seen him, heard that Texas accent, and perhaps some even started to like him a bit.

    In The Special Edition, we also meet him in the hangar, along with Biggs, and get a taste that he knows something about Luke, the orphan.

    In Phantom Menace, we watch a fighter with a nameless, faceless pilot crash onto the surface of the planet.

    Why? Just answer that question. Why did we watch that, other than to show off the effects, to show off all the hard work the guys COULD do, but didn't have to.

    The effort, I'm sorry, is meaningless. The only decision about what goes on the screen should be Does it advance the story or add to characterization?

    The fighter crashing doesn't, at all. The pear has a point of characterization, showing Anakin's arrogance in the use of his power, but also in Amidala, in being "wowed" enough by it to take a bite. Whether the CGI approach works can be the subject of debate. If it doesn't work, then find another way to show those things.

    Again, in TPM DVD, we have the air taxi sequence restored. The actual ride through the Coruscant sky adds nothing but a visualshowcase for those scenes. It's not like in Empire, when we really didn't get to see that much of Bespin. The Special Edition additions to Bespin really fix a flaw. It's a city in the clouds, but we don't see much of the city, or the clouds. In the Menace DVD, there was plenty of Coruscant following, and some of Coruscant preceding. Did we need that extra 20 seconds or whatever?

    Before they take off, they also added a little bit where QuiGonn says things have changed, and Anakin spins around. THAT addition, I think, added to the story. Shows Anakin's growing power and perhaps even a touch of suspicion on his part. Then QuiGonn shooshes him onto the taxi. The addition could have
  11. Durwood Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 18, 2002
    star 5
    Lucas is a control freak... even McCallum said as much at SWC2. He approves the designs of everything from the doorknobs to the silverware in AOTC...

    In other words, he's a director doing his job. Calling him a "control freak" when that's what a director is supposed to be is just ignorant. No offense intended, but I'm tired of people mischaracterizing Lucas because they are ignorant of the process of film production.
  12. Draculas_guest Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Dec 15, 2001
    star 2
    I think its a case of getting some balance between CG in films. CG is perfect for some things (Like dinosaurs), but when all you need is a bloke in a costume for a shot, it seems excessive to be using CG to whip someone up.

    I just watched Minorotiy report today, and for me, the CG was kept fimly in its place. Its only used when its absolutely necessary. I think the same could be said for Jurassic Park. The jungle and some of the sets were very real, but when it came to dinosaurs running and jumping, the CG shined.

    AOTC is drenched in CG, some of it is great, but some of it feels unnecessary.

    I thought the CG yoda was perfect, some of the traditionalists might not like that, but I never liked the puppet they used in TPM, but then I didnt like some of the backgrounds and various CG titbits that were used in AOTC. I'm not anti CG, but I do think there is waaay too much in AOTC
  13. Akumz_Razor Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 25, 2002
    star 4
    What bothered me was when one group did a turn to the left, and I was thinking, "Didn't the droid troopers do the same spin in Menace?"

    It's just a military Left Face movement. I was glad during both films when I saw the military formations executing this manouver.

    It shows that the guys it ILM pay some attention to the real world.

    EDIT- After executing the Left Face, the platoon gives a Present Arms with their blasters to the formation marching past them up those stairs seen in the previous shot. Very realistic, IMO.
  14. eguang Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    May 19, 2002
    star 1
    Have you guys seen the new DVD of Pearl Harbor. It showes how the director used real ships, real explosions, real extras/stuntmen, real planes, etc but of course in very small qty. Then ILM enhanced and added explosions, planes, people, ships, etc. They had no need for blue screens. They just added things and the result is a very believable action sequence. So CGI is great but it looks better when you use it to enhance rather than to create everything from scratch. Yoda a a CGI character, perfect!, lots of emotions, better facial expression than many actors, including Natalie Portman!
  15. arabiansanchez Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Nov 17, 2001
    star 4
    In my opinion the CGI was questionablein the cases of the Shaak, Nexu, a couple of scenes with Yoda and the droid factory Jango.

    THAT'S IT.

    The clones were brought up totally identically. This mean they will speak identically, think in a near identical manner and move in an identical manner.

    The reason they look 'fake' to some people is because they are supposed to. Noone has ever witnessed an army of clones in combat. They will appear 'stiff' because there is no varation in how they move (nor is there meant to be).

    To back up my point, the Naboo sky is supposed to look fake. Notice that it is a brighter blue to our own and the clouds are over fluffy. This is to give the impression of an other worldly environment.

    What I'm getting at is that the desired effect is not possible without CGI and that is the point I believe many of you are missing (or refusing to accept).

    The clones are amazing and as testament to this I ask all of you who question this to find a friend who has not been privy to the knowledge that all the clones are CGI and ask him/her to point out which ones are unquestionably, in their opinion, live action actors in suits.

    I guarantee they will say that the clones with lines and atleast a few of the clones in the crush hall (obviously I mean a digitally anti-aged Temeura Morrison re-inserted over and over moving slightly differently).

    IMO a CGI clone is 1000% better than an extra in a clone trooper suit.

    CGI is ready NOW and I don't see how people don't realise that. Yoda will not look all that more realistic in EPIII if it were done 10 years from now because he is an 'alien' and will never look real to us.

    Just enjoy the fim and don't look for ways to needlessly attack the actors, GL or the CGI.

    As an after thought don't you think GL would have been criticised if the clones a) were of varying heights, b) had different voices or c)moved differently?

    It's a lose-lose situation for him and I don't see why so many people are so quick to criticise his company's work.
  16. dmodog Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Mar 1, 1999
    Can anyone out there seriously make the claim that Clones' asteroid sequence was better? It LOOKED prettier, because it was CGI. But it wasn't the exciting bit of filmmaking that Empire's asteroid chase was. The point being that if the CGI isn't going to be completely believable, you don't do it.

    so just because people are picky about cgi then he shouldn't put certain scenes in the movie?

    There was tension, suspense, action and drama in the Empire sequence.

    so you are saying the asteroid sequence in aotc is unsuspensful because of the cgi?

    In Menace, one glaring example is the Naboo fighter being shot on takeoff and doing the Wile E. Coyote collapse to the surface. Totally unnecessary. Why? Just answer that question. Why did we watch that, other than to show off the effects, to show off all the hard work the guys COULD do, but didn't have to.

    what about all of the people who died on that ship in ROTJ during the last battle ("it's a trap!")? there were a lot of good guys who died for "no reason" in star wars battles who's faces we never got to see. it just gives a sense of danger in what they are doing. look... let's look at the scenario that george lucas goes through the trouble to introduce this "character" flying the naboo fighter, it would be the shortest and most pointless introduction in history. it would be like "i'm heading out", bang, dead. and what about if they didn't shoot at exiting fighters, then a bunch of people would be saying "you'd think the federation guys would be prepared to shoot down naboo fighters as soon as they exited the place!", or if they did try to shoot at them and didn't hit anyone they would say "man, what terrible shots they have!". it adds a sense of realism and danger, and i'm actually happy about the way george lucas did it.

    The only decision about what goes on the screen should be Does it advance the story or add to characterization? The fighter crashing doesn't, at all.

    buy the book then. ALL films with war sequences have these kind of shots. why don't you complain about the part in saving private ryan where that guy who takes off his helmet gets a bullet to the head? these are shots that give realism and danger into the scene. it shows that basically they aren't fooling around. nameless good guys are dying just as much as nameless bad guys.

    Again, in TPM DVD, we have the air taxi sequence restored. there was plenty of Coruscant following, and some of Coruscant preceding. Did we need that extra 20 seconds or whatever?

    well now we are talking about tpm instead of aotc, but anyway... first of all, he did it for the dvd release. which basically means he did it for fans. just to give them what it would look like you were in a taxi on coruscant. what's wrong with that? don't buy the dvd if you don't like these "pointless sequences." but don't watch fellowship of the ring anytime soon, it does the same thing... a lot...

    BTW, none of the CGI backers have responded, that I have seen, to the CGI Threepio "Bendi Toy" question.

    well the "bendi toy" sequence maybe some of us can't back up. your right it didn't look that great. infact it's probably the only cgi shot in the whole movie that i actually didn't like.

    But what I've seen here is that most of those who defend CGI do so with just as much fervor, and their claims of truth and fact are just as lacking as some of the bashing of CGI.

    at least we are actually explaining why it WOULDN'T work. all the other people are doing is explaining why they want it.

    just look at dr. evazan, he didn't answer anything. his only argument was a false one, that the facts i was listing were "opinion". man i hate that guy...

    but i like sciwalker more, he's actually listing reasons why he doesn't like things, even though i don't really agree with them, it's a lot better than what dr. evazan was doing.

    by the way, arabian sanchez has a good point about clonetroopers above. which is yet, another reason why cgi is simpler, easier, and overall better for the clon
  17. DrEvazan Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jun 19, 2002
    star 4
    "just look at dr. evazan, he didn't answer anything. his only argument was a false one, that the facts i was listing were "opinion". man i hate that guy..."

    *sigh* they will never get it.
  18. dmodog Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Mar 1, 1999
    *sigh* they will never get it.

    who won't get what?

    you still haven't really replied to anything i said before. is that what i'm supposed to get?
  19. yado Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    May 17, 2002
    The clonetroopers looked amazing, but that isn´t so important IMHO... The more actors there are, the more it seems like "serious filmmaking".
    It really doesn´t bother me if Lucas decides to use cgi clonetroopers in episode 3 as well, but I´d love to see at least a couple of real actors inside the uniforms.
  20. moeman5285 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jul 14, 2002
    The CG and special effects in the star wars movies are top of the line (when they were released) and always will be.
  21. Sciwalker Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    May 31, 2002
    star 1
    Can anyone out there seriously make the claim that Clones' asteroid sequence was better? It LOOKED prettier, because it was CGI. But it wasn't the exciting bit of filmmaking that Empire's asteroid chase was. The point being that if the CGI isn't going to be completely believable, you don't do it.

    so just because people are picky about cgi then he shouldn't put certain scenes in the movie?

    Unless he's got a time machine, he can't know. But he should know, after Phantom Menace, that not every single bit of CGI is convincing. He needs to be more discriminating with what does and doesn't work.

    There was tension, suspense, action and drama in the Empire sequence.

    so you are saying the asteroid sequence in aotc is unsuspensful because of the cgi?

    No, I'm saying it shouldn't have been included because, while it looked better in CGI, it wasn't a better sequence. I mean, it proves that Obi-Wan doesn't like flying. But he does a damn good job of it, doesn't he? I didn't say CGI made it unsuspenseful. I'm saying Lucas used an unsuspenseful sequence because the CGI looked better. I hope I've made myself clear, but I see a different distinction.

    In Menace, one glaring example is the Naboo fighter being shot on takeoff and doing the Wile E. Coyote collapse to the surface. Totally unnecessary. Why? Just answer that question. Why did we watch that, other than to show off the effects, to show off all the hard work the guys COULD do, but didn't have to.

    what about all of the people who died on that ship in ROTJ during the last battle ("it's a trap!")? there were a lot of good guys who died for "no reason" in star wars battles who's faces we never got to see. it just gives a sense of danger in what they are doing. look... let's look at the scenario that george lucas goes through the trouble to introduce this "character" flying the naboo fighter, it would be the shortest and most pointless introduction in history.

    The difference is that in Menace, we LINGER on that guys fall to the planet's surface, but all the others in Jedi and Star Wars were quick 'splosions. The only lingering death in Star Wars was Red Leader, and of course, we get to know him a bit. You linger on his death because it advances the tension for Luke.

    I didn't say introduce the guy (or gal) who dies. I'm saying DON'T linger on the shot just to show the pretty special effect, be it CGI or plain old optical FX. As a matter of fact, I'd almost prefer it was an optical FX. I think the point I'd rather make is that Lucas has forgotten when to hold off on when to use effects. He used to try to edit his way around it. CGI has robbed Lucas of his best trait as a filmmaker (what he himself was his best trait), the ability to edit a film. It is DISCIPLINED. His use of effects now, of any kind, is undisciplined, and it's the advancement of CGI that has caused this in him.


    it would be like "i'm heading out", bang, dead. and what about if they didn't shoot at exiting fighters, then a bunch of people would be saying "you'd think the federation guys would be prepared to shoot down naboo fighters as soon as they exited the place!", or if they did try to shoot at them and didn't hit anyone they would say "man, what terrible shots they have!". it adds a sense of realism and danger, and i'm actually happy about the way george lucas did it.

    We have to agree to disagree then. Imagine this shot. Rick Odie takes off. You see two fighters out of his cockpit. As he clears the hangar, an explosion is immediate. After the explosion clears, you see one fighter out of his cockpit. Odie looks over his head and sees the Federation tank at the hangar entrance for a brief second.

    The only decision about what goes on the screen should be Does it advance the story or add to characterization? The fighter crashing doesn't, at all.

    Again, in TPM DVD, we have the air taxi sequence restored. there was plenty of Coruscant following, and some of Coruscant preceding. Did we need that extra 20 seconds or what
  22. Darth_Zoo Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 15, 2002
    star 4
    My friends and I (many who saw AotC twice) were very surprised to hear that all the clone troopers were CGI. I saw AotC twice and I didn't even realize the individual troopers were digitally created!

    The effect to that extent were amazing.

    C-3po bendie toy sequence looked so unbelievable because we have become used to a very rigid and stiff gold robot (the past 4 movies). So to see him flapping all about was a definte flag.
  23. Krash RSA Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 11, 2000
    star 5
    The fact that all of the Clonetroopers were created using CGI didn't bother me at all. In fact, until someone told me that was the case...I'd thought many of the foreground troopers were real. Congrats to the boyz at ILM for raising the level of what they can do. And yes, the Oscars won't care again...like they screwed TPM.

    I don't think switching between CGI and real actors in clonetrooper suits would look right; because there would be an obvious change in the look of the different troopers.

    Things were no differnet back when the OT was filmed then it is today. Who here can't tell where the lines of "real" troopers ends and the matte painting begins (on the DSII hanger scenes in ROTJ) The only difference is, now with CGI, there is so much that can be done digitally that GL can create that epic battle on Geonosis.
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