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. Billy_Dee_Binks Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 29, 2002
    star 4

    99.9%? All three films had loads of shots featuring models filmed with motion cameras rigs, not just photographed for CGI location mapping.
  2. thejeditraitor Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 19, 2003
    star 6
    i was going to reply and say the same thing but i'm tired of wasting my time.
  3. FRAGWAGON Jedi Master

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    Nov 3, 2012
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  4. SimitarLikeTusk Jedi Knight

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    Most of the sets Ive seen posted wouldnt have used rolling cameras, Im telling you. I saw behind the behind the scenes pictures/footage of cameras rolling on miniatures of podracers blowing up and a section of the lava river (which they unfortunately ended up making look completely fake by over-cgi-adding to it). Was there anything else? Id actually be curious to know.
  5. Qui-Riv-Brid Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 18, 2013
    star 4
    What do you mean by models?

    There models and then miniatures then miniatures which have models that aren't free standing as such but buildings as part of the overall scapes created.

    Of course there were reference models. Tons of them. The trick is which and when were used, photographed, scanned, filmed or whatever methods they used to create all these shots.

    You have to use every trick in the toolbox that you can.

    As you say though lots of the work done in the PT can probably be done totally in the virtual world now. I don't know how much the ST will use of the techniques of the PT.

    On an overall scale the ST is likely to be far less practical than the PT which was far more practical than the OT.

    I'm not sure how they made a section of a lava river look "fake" by over adding CG if there even was any. Maybe the fake part you saw was the miniature bit where they didn't add CG so that looked fake in comparison to the rest.

    I really don't get this fake business. It's all "fake" anyway so best thing to do is accept the fantastic.
    Last edited by Qui-Riv-Brid, Aug 2, 2014
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  6. Delta Scepter Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 5, 2014
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    I just want to say that if anyone knows someone who still has doubts about the practical effects of the prequels, show them these clips from Within A Minute:



    Last edited by Delta Scepter, Aug 2, 2014
  7. Delta Scepter Jedi Knight

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    Jun 5, 2014
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    Shoot, double post.
    Last edited by Delta Scepter, Aug 2, 2014
  8. Samwise_Skywalker Jedi Master

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    Feb 2, 2002
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    Love this thread!

    If I remember, they mentioned in the Within a Minute documentary that Sith had more sets built than any other Star Wars movie.
  9. The_Phantom_Calamari Jedi Master

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    Nov 10, 2011
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    There was certainly motion control used in The Phantom Menace. The shot of the Radiant VII and the Trade Federation Core ships in the beginning is an obvious example. I believe some shots in the final space battle were also achieved this way, although there was a mix of CGI.

    However, I do think you're correct in that they stopped using motion control cameras for the space scenes in the following two prequels. It's because it wasn't necessary. CGI is just better for that sort of thing, period. It's a no-brainer.
  10. Padme's Love Slave Jedi Knight

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    Apr 16, 2013
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    I didn't hear anything. But if there is an example of a physical space ship model being filmed with a motion control camera in the past few years, I'm not aware of it. If anyone has any info to the contrary, please post. I didn't read about this 3D printing process. Is that really necessary? If true, it seems like they are going to an out of their way extreme with the practical effects. One of my fears for Episode VII is that the practical effects are going to appear too "reactionary" to what some believed to be an overuse of CGI in the prequels. If JJ didn't call for a physical model of the Enterprise, then he shouldn't call for a physical model of the Millenium Falcon.


    Yep! Menace was the last Star Wars use physical space ship models. Other models/miniatures continued to be used for Clones and Sith.
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  11. Billy_Dee_Binks Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 29, 2002
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    I wonder, though, didn't ILM blow up a physical model of the AT-TE? Or was that just for animation reference? I remember hearing both.
    The large model that's being exhibited still looks in great shape.
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  12. Padme's Love Slave Jedi Knight

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    Apr 16, 2013
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    Possibly. Specifically, "space ship" models were last used in Menace.
  13. ShaneP Ex-Mod Officio

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
    star 7
    Yes, they rigged a model AT-TE and blew it up.

    As was mentioned though, the space shots of AOTC and ROTS used CG ships. However, what happened around the time of the prequels is a ton of miniature landscapes were built for all three films. This went beyond what was done in the OT.
    I asked Lorne Peterson about it in 05 during an online chat and he confirmed that digital allowed the model team to build these huge landscapes as the foundations of shots and then put them into the computer and enhance them with digital mattes in the far background and blue screen shot extras etc.
    2005 was around the time ILM started to use their new Zeno platform. It allowed ILM to expand their use of practical textures and miniature scales believe it or not. They were using model textures and practical stuff all over for the PT films.
  14. Darth Rycbar Jedi Youngling

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    Aug 1, 2014
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    Oh look, a spaceship! ;)
    [IMG]
    [IMG]
    Last edited by Darth Rycbar, Sep 9, 2014
  15. Billy_Dee_Binks Jedi Master

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    Mar 29, 2002
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    I never knew the Jedi Starfighter life-size prop had such polished paneling. Maybe the first shot shows it before layers upon layers of grime and wear were applied (like in the second picture).
    Now I wonder how many times they repainted that one full model for ROTS? My guess would be four times (yellow, red, blue, green).
    Last edited by Billy_Dee_Binks, Sep 10, 2014
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  16. Leoluca Randisi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 24, 2014
    star 5
    All one has to do is watch the making of documentaries for all three prequels to see all the practical effects shots in the movies. or you can just check out these beautiful pictures in this thread for proof.....
  17. QuangoFett Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 11, 2011
    star 4
    Back in 2005, I gave some semi-serious thought to building a life-sized Eta-2. The ones built for the film were quite inspiring.

    How many Eta-2s were actually built for ROTS?
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  18. Darth Rycbar Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2014
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    As far as I know, two full ships (Anakin's and Obi-Wan's) and two cockpits. I couldn't find a picture of the full Obi-Wan Eta-2 or I would have posted it too, but I've seen it in a video.
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  19. EternalHero Jedi Knight

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    Feb 17, 2014
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    @Darth Rycbar If Kevin Smith saw that he'd cry and dribble snot from his nose and tell the story 100 times to rapt audiences. "This **** is REAL! Not CGI!!!" LOL
  20. QuangoFett Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 11, 2011
    star 4
    I also recall seeing the red Eta-2 at one point. Do you know if the full-sized props used for the Mustafar and Utapau missions were repaints of ones built for filming the Battle of Coruscant?

    Because of the way the Eta-2 was designed and built, it somehow seemed more "real" than many of the other ships in the films, including the OT. The cockpit's excellent frontal, top and side visibility allowed a lot of scenes set in and around Eta-2s to be filmed with the actors in the shot. It's a very compact vehicle, and there were numerous shots throughout ROTS featuring a full view of an intricately detailed full-sized Eta-2 prop. All in all, it's a superb design and one of the most memorable from the films.

    It's far from the only full-sized vehicular prop built for the PT.
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  21. Samnz Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 3
    I like that ship a lot as well, especially Anakin's yellow one.
    [IMG]

    I think the biggest ship that was built full-sized and complete was Dooku's solar saler, which was then later used as a exhibit at Fox Studios.

    Recently, I thought it would be cool if a respected Star Wars blog or site would just try to sell an old and rareTPM or AOTC set picture as a "leaked" Ep. VII set pic. I'd really be anxious to see how many "quality sites" would walk into the trap and bash the Prequels based on a prequel picture :) A photo like this would be suitable, maybe a bit more obscure, I guess:
    [IMG]

    In any case, I hope Ep. VII makers will keep their word and cut off their actors's arms in case it's needed in the story. I mean look, Anakin's blue CG arm really "ruins" the otherwise complete set here in AOTC ...
    [IMG]

    ... and even worse in ROTS, two arms, George just didn't get it:
    [IMG]

    CGI arms suck, just cut it off practically! :p
    Last edited by Samnz, Sep 14, 2014
  22. JEDI-RISING Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 15, 2005
    star 5
    i know right. I was watching Avengers this morning thinking....i'm so glad they used a real Hulk and real Iron Man armor.
  23. EternalHero Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2014
    star 3

    No, no, you have to understand: other people do CGI "right" in way that's "acceptable". Lucas was doing it "wrong". If he'd had "strong scripts" or "more engaging performances" that would have magically offset the "bad" CGI FX. It's a matter of degrees. This is what makes it possible for Prequel Deniers to dodge every rational and logical attempt to highlight what's good about the films; if there's nothing good about them then they must be bad, right? As long as they keep moving the goal post it's impossible to ever score and they "win" every debate. Pretty nifty, huh?
    Last edited by EternalHero, Sep 15, 2014
  24. JEDI-RISING Jedi Grand Master

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    Apr 15, 2005
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  25. EternalHero Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2014
    star 3
    Ask any OT Purist and they will quickly tell you that the pinnacle of Star Wars is The Empire Strikes Back. So pure, everything is so "real". Irvin Kershner is the Anti-Lucas, the Messiah to the Anti-Christ from Modesto. If "Kersh" had made the prequels they would have been perfect! No doubt about it. Shot on film with practical effects. Yessir, what possessed crazy old George Lucas to direct the things himself, with his zany notions of digital art?

    Oh and there's this:

    Mark Newbold: Do you wish you had digital back then back in 1980?
    Irvin Kershner: Of course, of course. In my photography I’m doing only digital and the next film I’ll do, which I’m planning will be all digital. In fact, a few weeks ago I saw Francis Coppola’s new film which was shot in Romania and it was shot digital. And it was projected in George Lucas’ new projection room – digital! And I couldn’t believe that was digital projection, it was just the most beautiful images I’ve ever seen on the screen. How do you like that?

    [face_laugh][face_rofl][face_laugh][face_rofl][face_laugh][face_rofl]
    http://www.starwars.com/news/interv...-with-the-director-of-the-empire-strikes-back
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