PT Practical Effects in the Prequels- Sets, Pictures, Models, etc.

Discussion in 'Prequel Trilogy' started by Han Burgundy, Dec 28, 2013.

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  1. Han Burgundy Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 28, 2013
    star 3
    For all the flack they get, the PT was actually fairly conservative in its use of CGI compared to many blockbusters released in the past few years. But, from most of the behind the scenes material I've seen, there is very little focus on the physical and practical effects used in the films.

    Does anybody have instances of practical effects in the PT they'd like to share, especially ones that may not be widely known to the general fandom?

    I'm especially interested in the Battle over Coruscant. I always assumed it was totally CGI, until people on the boards started saying it used models and squibs. I'd love to see proof of that if there is any.
    Last edited by Han Burgundy, Dec 28, 2013
  2. SlashMan Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2012
    star 3
    [IMG]
    In my mind, the Tatooine sets stick out the most. Unmistakably the same planet we were introduced to in A New Hope, but we see a very different side of things.
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    Of course, there's no shortage of miniatures as well. Often hard to distinguish from CGI, I guess that means they did a good job.

    One picture that I can't find is of a miniature bridge from the Mos Espa arena. Such a detailed set (populated with Micro Machines figures) was made, and I don't even think it was seen in the movie.

    In addition, we can also go into prosthetics/makeup, which were better than ever with lifelike articulated masks, and even some more inhuman creatures were achieved without CGI (Oppo Rancisis).
  3. Samnz Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 2
    Very good idea for a thread. I truly think there was some "unhandiness" in the way Lucas, McCallum etc. "promoted" the effects. Focusing on CG effect in documentaries was logical (since it was new, models had been there for a long time) but it also helped creating the illusion that the Prequels were "all CGI".

    Models/Miniatures:
    [IMG] [IMG]
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    [IMG][IMG]

    There were also some large sets that usually ignorend when the "it was all green screen" attacks start.
  4. SithStarSlayer Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2003
    star 6
    Fantastic topic!

    [IMG]
    Worthy of being Stickied.
    Last edited by SithStarSlayer, Dec 30, 2013
  5. TX-20 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 21, 2013
    star 3
    Those are some beautiful miniatures.
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  6. Han Burgundy Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 28, 2013
    star 3
    Wow, yeah. Some of those things, like Kamino and the industrial portion of the speeder chase, I would have never guessed they used models for. It honestly makes me look at those scenes differently knowing how they were achieved.
  7. AnakinColodin Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2009
    star 2
    [IMG]

    amazingly the only cgi in this scene is the space battle, the red light things and the glow around Palpatines shackles.
  8. Samnz Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 2
    I also thought for a long time that Kamino was realized almost entirely thorugh CGI - mainly because it was reported that Ewan McGregor was just walking through a blue set for that scene. Obviously bluescreen does not equal CGI. Bluescreen is merely a placeholder for some technique (not necessarily CGI) to be inserted later in the process. I mean, look at this...
    [IMG][IMG]
    ....good old times with bluescreen, but they probably didn't use CGI in 1983.

    A few more models I've rediscovered:
    [IMG][IMG][IMG]
    [IMG]

    Since the thread title also says "Sets", I'm going to post some built sets and "real locations" (Part 1)

    Naboo:
    [IMG][IMG]
    [IMG]
    (3x Theed)

    [IMG]
    (funeral)

    [IMG]
    (for some reason, I always assumed the Duel Of The Fates was a lot CG, but some parts were really big and built)

    Trade Federation Interior:
    [IMG]

    Coruscant was certainly CG-heavy (how would you build Coruscant), they still built many sets with only missing windows:
    [IMG]
    (Coruscant exterior, Nightclub)

    [IMG]
    (Yoda teachings with Yoda statue!!!!)

    [IMG]
    (landing platform, you can't build the skyline, but of the floor as well as the landing ramp)

    [IMG]
    (Dex's Diner)

    Tatooine:
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    (that's cute, isn't it? :) )
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    Last edited by Samnz, Jan 4, 2014
  9. Samnz Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 2
    PART 2 (more Sets):
    [IMG]
    (some blue stuff, but look at the large maschines in the background! and there was a miniature)
    [IMG]
    (don't really know where that is. looks like the Pod Hangar as well, but who's that Jedi????)
    [IMG]
    (Mos Espa, AOTC)

    Ship interiors were (almost?) always constructed:
    [IMG]

    Padmé's veranda in the making:
    [IMG]

    Some "real" locations:
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    and last but not least, the big blue screen set also known as Caserta Palace: :D
    [IMG]

    Oh, and there were also some "real stunts" (I've heard complaints about "CGI stunts" in the past) too:
    [IMG]

    I hope there were some interesting new insight and pictures for some of you!
    Last edited by Samnz, Jan 4, 2014
  10. Slicer87 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 18, 2013
    star 1
    I never really got the CGI hate that seems popular these days. These are really cool pictures, it shows how different effects were combined much better than when the OT was filmed, it really is hard to tell at times what is or isn't CGI. Also this pokes alot of holes in anti-PT arguments.
    Last edited by Slicer87, Jan 5, 2014
  11. Samnz Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 2
    Just a few more pics (since I noticed that ROTS is a bit underrepresented):

    So some pics from Invisible Hand sets:
    [IMG][IMG]

    Some live action spark effects on set:
    [IMG]

    Padmé's veranda was one of my favourite sets in the film and built:
    [IMG]
    [IMG]

    All the costume work for just a few seconds in the film:
    [IMG]

    Palpatine's office:
    [IMG]

    And some additions to AOTC (you can only post 20 pics per post, so sorry for mutiple posts):
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    (if there is something hard about acting with blue screen, then it's acting with these blue guys :) )

    [IMG]
    (it has to be shiny!)

    [IMG]

    [IMG]

    [IMG]
    (the ship's ruins would have been an easy challenge for the computer)
  12. Big_Benn_Klingon Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 14, 2013
    star 1
    I don't get the CGI hate either, it's an amazing and intensive art-form. It allows for so many things to be done that never could before. I don't think people remember what the vast majority of "practical" effects were like 30 years ago (hint: they were bad, really bad).

    But what is enjoyable about this thread is that how many of these scenes ppl were like "omg enough with the CGI already!" when they were actually models and sets. The irony is really enjoyable (poetic justice?)
  13. Hobyoda42 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jan 6, 2014
    I think that the CGI effects are wonderful.
  14. Slicer87 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 18, 2013
    star 1
    Very enjoyable, LOL.
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  15. Samnz Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 2
    I've found pictures!


    [IMG]

    Battle of Naboo:
    [IMG]
    [IMG][IMG]
    [IMG]

    Planet Core:
    [IMG]

    Pod Race:
    [IMG]

    Theed:
    [IMG]

    And more sets:
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    (I never thought that they had actually demaged the door on set)
    Last edited by Samnz, Jan 7, 2014
  16. Han Burgundy Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 28, 2013
    star 3
    The planet core and the Naboo battle explosion made me geek out. That's a lot of work for such brief shots.

    Any chance anyone has seen something from the Battle of Coruscant? I've searched google numerous times and haven't found anything.
    Last edited by Han Burgundy, Jan 7, 2014
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  17. SlashMan Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2012
    star 3
    Definitely an Obi-Wan double (I'm positive that is not Ewan). The lightsaber is similar to Adi Gallia's but even then, it's not a complete match. Could be an early mock-up.

    As to what Obi-Wan would be doing in this scene, I have no idea. I thought the only time Obi-Wan was actually on Tatooine was for this promotional shot:
    [IMG]
    Could just be that they were preparing the actor for a separate scene, but it still baffles me why he's on this set.
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  18. Billy_Dee_Binks Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 29, 2002
    star 4
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  19. Samnz Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 2
    This will be my last two post in that thread.

    At first more additions to TPM and AOTC:
    [IMG]
    (honestly, I never thought this was so big)

    [IMG]
    (Theed again)

    [IMG]
    (Pod Race)

    [IMG]
    (real stunt in the real desert!)

    [IMG]
    (Mos Espa)

    [IMG]
    (the Palace)

    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    (4x Geonosis)

    [IMG]
    (freigther)
  20. Samnz Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 2
    And my last post. Finally some miniature work for ROTS:

    [IMG]
    (either Mustafar or Utapau)

    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    (3x Mustafar)

    [IMG]
    (Feluccia)

    [IMG]
    (looks like the Hangar on the Invisible Hand during the battle @Han Burgundy )

    [IMG]
    (is this Cata Neimodia? I'm not good with these minor planets...)

    [IMG]
    (can't identify what they construct)

    [IMG]
    (Utapau sinkhole)

    And some more Sets:
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    Last edited by Samnz, Jan 8, 2014
  21. Seagoat Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2013
    star 4
    Makes me wonder what they mean when they're saying the ST will rely less on CGI than the PT.
  22. Calgamer Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 30, 2012
    I think every person that ever thinks Lucas used nothing but CGI for the prequels should be forced to read this thread. I really liked the model of the Geonosis arena. I would love to buy one.
  23. Big_Benn_Klingon Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 14, 2013
    star 1
    agreed.. I would kill to get my hands on that ep1 battle tank. Makes me wonder, where is all this stuff now?
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  24. Calgamer Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 30, 2012
    Probably in the hands of people that worked on films. People that might part with them for nothing short of a small fortune haha
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  25. Han Burgundy Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 28, 2013
    star 3
    It's very possible that the models are safe and have good homes, but one of the saddest things about film production is that all of those beautiful sets get torn apart basically as soon as they are no longer being used. One of the few exceptions is Hobbiton from Lord of the Rings, where they went back for the new films and built the whole villiage with permanent materials.
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