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58 posts tagged with specialeffects.
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Fearsome Architect

Who designed the tricorder, the flip-top communicator, the Vulcan lute, the the Romulan Bird-of-Prey? Wah Chang. Who made the Gorn and the salt vampire from M-113? Who commissioned the first 500 tribbles? Wah Chang. Who made Tarantula take to the hills? Who built the prototype for the time machine and created a monster too terrible to show on television? Who animated dinosaurs and adorned Cleopatra? Wah Chang, Wah Chang, Wah Ming Chang. [more inside]
posted by Iridic on Nov 5, 2014 - 20 comments

What The Hell Is All This Mess?

The most epic nerf war in history. RackaRacka are wannabe film-makers on a rampage. [more inside]
posted by h00py on Oct 18, 2014 - 14 comments

Broke into the wrong goddamn rec room, didn't ya you bastard!?

Monster Legacy, a blog "trying to delve into the secrets of the making of Movie Monsters," presents Subterranean Terror, an in depth look at the creature effects of the greatest Precambrian sandworm horror-comedy franchise of all time. [more inside]
posted by brundlefly on Sep 29, 2014 - 32 comments

Master of the Macabre

A self-taught special effects guru, A.S. Hamilton has crafted [simulated injuries] with chilling perfection. But his greatest big-screen challenge was bringing one of human history’s most gruesome chapters back to life.
CONTENT WARNING: descriptions of violence, graphic movie set photos and stills [more inside]
posted by tykky on Sep 1, 2014 - 3 comments

And the truth of the matter is Arnold and I are old. I mean, really old.

True Lies is a 1994 action comedy film directed by James Cameron and starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jamie Lee Curtis, and Tom Arnold. The film was a huge hit, and is noteworthy in that it featured visual special effects considered impossible only a few years prior. It's been 20 years since it was released. Time for a revisit, then. [SPOILERS if you haven't seen this movie.] [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Jul 18, 2014 - 95 comments

Here kitty, kitty, kitty. Meow. Here, Jonesy.

220 images from Alien including behind the scenes photos, concept art and early effects shots.
posted by brundlefly on Jun 27, 2014 - 21 comments

Will it go round in Circles...

Den of Geek provides a brief survey of rotating sets in film as far back as Royal Wedding in 1951 all the way up to Inception in 2010. In the world of music video, Metallica did their own interesting... ahem, spin on it for "The Memory Remains". The television show "Glee" paid tribute to Royal Wedding with their own rotating room song and dance number. Finally, the Den of Geek article states that such effects require, "intense planning, expensive materials and an army of builders". Nonsense.
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI on Jun 9, 2014 - 10 comments

MATTES - Like you've never seen them before!

Huge collection of (and commentary on) matte art from classic films that has been rescanned for HD releases. Much more on the process of creating and filming this type of setup at last month's post. (previously)
posted by BlackLeotardFront on May 19, 2014 - 13 comments

Spoiler: Basically Lucas, Jackson, Spielberg, Cameron all the way down

Clips from each of the visual effects winners at the Oscars since 1979. Worth comparing to this great feature from Empire where 15 leading special effects artists were each asked to pick a favorite effect (also with clips). It is probably not worth comparing to the 6 best special effects from Turkish knock-offs of American films.
posted by blahblahblah on Jan 30, 2014 - 22 comments

COLOR BY TECHNICOLOR

Of course matte art has for a long time played a major part in Hollywood's recreation of the old west, with effects shots ranging from simple top ups of mood enhancing skies right through to entire recreations of frontier settings to often wonderful effect. Todays blog will take a look at some of those marvellous visions - the product of the many often uncredited artists who worked tirelessly in the various studio matte departments.

Mattes Ride The Range: The art of the matte shot in Westerns
posted by timshel on Dec 18, 2013 - 8 comments

all these men end up being killed in a horrific and astonishing fashion

In the 1933 movie King Kong, the titular hero kills a group of sailors by throwing them off a log. But some were supposed to have survived the fall, only to meet a gruesome end at the bottom of the ravine. When King Kong was edited, this terrifying scene was lost. So director Peter Jackson decided to re-create it!
The Lost Spider Pit Sequence [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Nov 4, 2013 - 20 comments

The Colossal Vitality of His Illusion

Baz has graciously agreed to let us release this 'before and afters' reel to show our peer group the VFX work completed on his film The Great Gatsby
posted by chavenet on Oct 7, 2013 - 50 comments

Don't Look Down

Why Gravity Director Alfonso Cuarón Will Never Make a Space Movie Again
posted by Artw on Oct 2, 2013 - 164 comments

How tall was King Kong?

Matte Shot - A Tribute to Golden Era Special FX ...the inventiveness and ingenuity of the craft of the matte painter during Hollywood's Golden Era. Some of the shots will amaze in their grandeur and epic quality while others will surprise in their 'invisibility' to even the sophisticated viewer. I hope this collection will serve as an appreciation of the artform and both casual visitors and those with a specialist interest may benefit, enjoy and be amazed at skills largely unknown today.
posted by cenoxo on Aug 10, 2013 - 13 comments

How to serve man ... or at least make it look that way.

Feeding Hannibal. The blog of food stylist Janice Poon covers interesting recipes such as Lambs' Tongues en Papillote and Tomato Brain Barquettes as well some of the less savory aspects of the TV show Hannibal, such as creating fake mold and mock human loin.
posted by milovoo on May 11, 2013 - 49 comments

GIANT GOD WARRIOR APPEARS IN TOKYO

Studio Ghibli presents Giant God Warrior Appears In Tokyo, a short tokusatsu film. (In Japanese, no subtitles.)
posted by brundlefly on Apr 24, 2013 - 71 comments

Some nifty special effects models

Steve Howarth has made a lot of practical special effects miniatures, including work on the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy movie, Moon, Crystal Maze and many more projects. Perhaps the most interesting is his work on Red Dwarf. [more inside]
posted by jiawen on Mar 22, 2013 - 12 comments

We'll put in on the tin in post

Before VFX (via)
posted by gwint on Mar 3, 2013 - 29 comments

Red Carpet, Green Screen

Without visual effects the average blockbuster movie would look like this. However as Hollywood comes under financial pressure they are putting the squeeze on the VFX industry that they rely on, who are in turn passing the pressure onto workers. Now VFX workers are organizing a protest in time for the Oscars, which will be celebrating visual effects as the companies responsible for them close down. [more inside]
posted by Artw on Feb 24, 2013 - 73 comments

What, Me Worry?

In 1959 Fred Astaire hired renowned makeup artist John Chambers to work on his television special, Another Evening with Fred Astaire. The assignment? Turn Fred Astaire into Alfred E. Neuman. The results were predictably strange. [more inside]
posted by usonian on Feb 16, 2013 - 19 comments

A Trip to the Moon, a triumph of science and scenic art

In 1889, the Urania Astronomical Society of Berlin put together an illusion of a trip to the moon and a solar eclipse, created with painted scenery, transparent screens, and a variety models, created live before an audience. Three years later, the same show was presented at Andrew Carnegie's Music Hall, as covered in Scientific American, a decade before Le Voyage dans la Lune, the film by Georges Méliès (previously). The stage show was documented in 1897, in Magic; stage illusions and scientific diversions, including trick photography (Archive.org, direct link to Trip to the Moon; also available on Google Books). [via io9, who have a summary of the special effects]
posted by filthy light thief on Jan 26, 2013 - 4 comments

"Carlo Rambaldi was E.T.'s Geppetto"

Special effects legend Carlo Rambaldi, most famous as the creator of E.T. and the titular creature in Alien, has died at the age of 86. Here is a montage of his work.
posted by brundlefly on Aug 10, 2012 - 19 comments

Nuke me, baby

Homebuilding a 474mm tall model of "Robocain" from 1990's Robocop 2, complete with a working head. Clips of Robocain and the other Robocop prototypes from the movie. All photos from the project. Bonus music link: Front Line Assembly performing the Robocop 2 sampling Mindphaser live.
posted by Artw on Aug 8, 2012 - 20 comments

Visionaries

Revisiting Cinefex - a nostalgia wormhole into the golden age of model work and practical effects and the odd piece of early CG via backissues of the quarterly magazine of motion picture visual effects. The latest issues covered touches on Young Sherlock Holmes's Stained glass knight - mainstream cinema’s first fully-rendered CG character created by Industrial Light & Magic's Pixar group.
posted by Artw on Aug 1, 2012 - 16 comments

Behind-the-scenes of Peter Jackson's "The Hobbit."

THE HOBBIT Production Video Blog
posted by crunchland on Jun 7, 2012 - 42 comments

V'Ger is that which seeks the Creator

In 2273, after having been thought lost in a black hole, Voyager 6 returned to Federation space as V'Ger, the massive and menacing spaceship at the heart of Star Trek: The Motion Picture... Designing the Living Machine - concept art for V'Ger, Redesigning the Walk to V’Ger, The Lighting and Photography of Star Trek's "V'ger", working on the interior of V'ger, V'ger External View, V'Ger - Spock Mindmeld Model Piece (scroll way down) (may contain Darth Vader and Miss Piggy), animating the "V'ger Probe", V'ger rear view.
posted by Artw on May 3, 2012 - 41 comments

"It even has miniature owls in the Owlery and hinges on the doors."

A 50 foot wide miniature of Hogwarts used in all of the Harry Potter films will be going on display in London this month. The miniature was designed and built by production designer Stuart Craig.
posted by brundlefly on Mar 5, 2012 - 42 comments

John Alan Schwartz: From Faces of Death to reviewing movies on YouTube

"I said before the film has historical importance (and it does), but it's relevance was more recognized in 1978 than the present day. The YouTube generation will be unable to comprehend what purpose the film served thirty years ago, and thus it's difficult to ignore how hopelessly dated Faces Of Death really is." It's relevance may have faded, but the intrigue remains. Deadspin recently interviewed the writer and producer of four compilations of death and gore, John Alan Schwartz. And of course, they discuss the fake gore in the monkey scene (interview clip with special make-up effects creators Allan Apone and Douglas White, with the memorable scene). And what is Schwarts up to today? He and his wife post videos of their movie reviews on YouTube (Tumblr, YouTube profile page, their website).
posted by filthy light thief on Feb 6, 2012 - 53 comments

First Person Monster Blog

First Person Monster Blog with your host, special effects artist Shannon Shea. [more inside]
posted by brundlefly on Jan 29, 2012 - 6 comments

"...I remember now"

Archetype is a seven minute sci-fi short by Aaron Sims, which despite being a no-budget project, features amazingly high quality special effects. [more inside]
posted by quin on Jan 24, 2012 - 17 comments

Surfing the Apocalypse

Apocalypse Later, Surf Now - A short, beautiful video of people enjoying themselves as the world ends.
posted by quin on Jan 17, 2012 - 14 comments

The Ray Harryhausen Creature List.

The Ray Harryhausen Creature List A video compilation of all Ray Harryhausen's stop-motion animated creatures.
posted by marxchivist on Jun 30, 2011 - 22 comments

A Mermaid's Tale

"One day a little boy came up, he must have been about four and he saw me taking off my (prosthetic) legs and he started with the 'why' questions, you know, 'why haven't you got any legs', etc. And I said 'have you heard of The Little Mermaid?' and he said 'yes' and I said 'I'm a mermaid' and he got this look on his face and he said 'wow that's cool' and ran off to tell his dad.

I'll have to turn up to that beach again sometime with my tail - just in case he's there."
Weta Digital are the special effects team behind the costumes, weapons and creatures of the Lord of the Rings movies, Avatar and even a sonic screwdriver prop that could be making an appearance on the next season of Doctor Who. In 2009, they created a fully functional mermaid tail pro bono for Nadya Vessey, an Auckland woman who is a double leg amputee. Video News Report: 1, 2.
posted by zarq on Apr 5, 2011 - 37 comments

Chris Casady's work on Tron 1982

Chris Casady's work on Tron 1982
posted by namagomi on Feb 16, 2011 - 4 comments

The Metamorphosis

A look behind the surprising amount of CGI used during the production of Black Swan. [slyt] [nsfw] [spoilers]
posted by schmod on Jan 27, 2011 - 49 comments

Flower Power

"Flower Warfare - Psychedelic Action Scene" by Freddie Wong (previously). Behind the scenes.
posted by brundlefly on Jul 30, 2010 - 11 comments

The Flow

Let Yourself Feel and Nokta and Reincarnation: just a few samples from hundreds you'll find on the vfxstuff channel at Vimeo.
posted by netbros on Jul 24, 2010 - 8 comments

Georges Méliès, the Cinemagician

He invented or popularized a startling array of the fundamental elements of film: the dissolve, the fade-in and fade-out, slow motion, fast motion, stop motion, double exposures and multiple exposures, miniatures, the in-camera matte, time-lapse photography, color film (albeit hand-painted), artificial film lighting, production sketches and storyboards, and the whole idea of narrative film.
By 1897, in a studio of his own design and construction – the first complete movie studio – his hand forged virtually everything on his screen. Norman McLaren writes, "He was not only his own producer, ideas man, script writer, but he was his own set-builder, scene painter, choreographer, deviser of mechanical contrivances, special effects man, costume designer, model maker, actor, multiple actor, editor and distributor." Also, his own cinematographer, and the inventor of cameras to suit his special conceptions. Not even auteur directors such as Charles Chaplin, Orson Welles, John Cassavetes, and Stanley Kubrick would personally author so many aspects of their films."
Inside: 57 films by Georges Méliès, the Grandfather of Visual Effects. [more inside]
posted by Paragon on Feb 3, 2010 - 31 comments

Graduate of Hogwarts

Mike Jittlov worked in special effects back before computers took over. His legendary film short, The Wizard Of Speed And Time, was actually a self-created remake of an earlier short. [more inside]
posted by hippybear on Jun 23, 2009 - 27 comments

Isn't that special?

The Top 50 Movie Special Effects Shots.
posted by theroadahead on Jan 6, 2009 - 68 comments

I've got to admit it's getting better

Brad Pitt is no spring chicken, but it still took some work to put an 85-year-old version of his face on a child's body in his newest movie. The first step: a new markerless, wireless, uncanny-valley-clearing motion capture process, termed "volumetric cinematography" by the effects studio. [more inside]
posted by peachfuzz on Jan 1, 2009 - 49 comments

Mac Vs PC

Mac Vs. PC. Inspired by Transformers, this short visual effects piece shows us what would happen if our home computers could turn into robots and started beating each other up.
posted by Effigy2000 on Dec 22, 2008 - 48 comments

Radiohead's House of Cards video

Radiohead's promo for their single House of Cards was "shot" using light and laser-based scanning systems rather than cameras, with data being generated in real-time. Includes video and making of, and you can even play around with a 3D visualization of Thom Yorke's head.
posted by hnnrs on Jul 14, 2008 - 109 comments

Good night, Stan

Legendary special effects artist Stan Winston has passed away from cancer at the age of 62. From Mr. Roboto to the Terminator to Iron Man, he leaves an almost unparalleled body of work.
posted by dersins on Jun 16, 2008 - 62 comments

"The Definitive British Space Opera... i.e. Bloody Miserable"

Blake's Back! British science fiction classic Blakes 7 is getting the Battlestar Galactica treatment. [more inside]
posted by fearfulsymmetry on Apr 25, 2008 - 45 comments

Online portfolio of Andrew Bell

drawnline: The commercial and personal work of Andrew Bell.
posted by gwint on Oct 14, 2007 - 4 comments

Close up the honkytonks

Sneaky Pete Kleinow, [Wikipedia | Allmusic] passed away Saturday, January 6 at the age of 72. In addition to being an incredible pedal steel guitar player, most notably with the Byrds and the Flying Burrito Brothers, he was also an accomplished visual effects artist who worked on films such as The Empire Strikes Back, Terminator I & II, and Army of Darkness.
posted by keswick on Jan 8, 2007 - 17 comments

Beavers! (and CG)

From extra sheep and mountains in Brokeback Mountain, to flipping around shops and removing a leg in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Buzz Image provides an extensive portfolio of their CG and FX work. And plenty of beavers.
posted by divabat on Dec 20, 2006 - 23 comments

Allez Oop

Les Kiriki Acrobates Japonais [YouTube] by Segundo de Chomon.
posted by tellurian on Mar 19, 2006 - 23 comments

The VFX of S.W.A.T.

CGchannel.com has a brief but fairly informative feature on the two CG effect "set pieces" in the recent movie S.W.A.T. I thought the movie was a quite respectable summer spectacle - the helicopter crash in particular was quite well-done - and it's usually fun and instructive to see how these things are done.
posted by GriffX on Sep 12, 2003 - 3 comments

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