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The Practical Effects of the Prequels (yes, the prequels)


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Amazing miniature work shot with no-ready-for primetime digital cameras and killed by over-comping. Even now, just 10 years later, the same stuff would look 100x better with today's cameras.

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Plus I just think CGI sucked back then. So the stuff that was CGI looked really bad. TPM came out when? Late 90s? CGI kind of only started getting legs then. And like the graphics of the gaming industry, improved on itself at a rapid pace. So the CGI that was used dated very quickly.

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Guest El Chalupacabra

I actually think TPM's CGI holds up better than AOTC's. Scenes like the arena battle and the very end as the clone troopers board the star destroyers look about like same quality as the Clone Wars video game on the Gamecube.

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That difference comes from the cameras used. Like I said, the tech wasnt there. TPM was shot on film and digitized, so at least some elements were of quality. AOTC was shot purely digital.

 

Its crazy how much the tech has advance, pretty much all movies are shot digitally now. Tarrantino, Speilberg, and Nolan are practically the only guys left that insist on film.

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That difference comes from the cameras used. Like I said, the tech wasnt there. TPM was shot on film and digitized, so at least some elements were of quality. AOTC was shot purely digital.

 

Its crazy how much the tech has advance, pretty much all movies are shot digitally now. Tarrantino, Speilberg, and Nolan are practically the only guys left that insist on film.

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Guest El Chalupacabra

That difference comes from the cameras used. Like I said, the tech wasnt there. TPM was shot on film and digitized, so at least some elements were of quality. AOTC was shot purely digital.

 

Its crazy how much the tech has advance, pretty much all movies are shot digitally now. Tarrantino, Speilberg, and Nolan are practically the only guys left that insist on film.

In addition to the advances in digital camera technology, this is LITERALLY Moore's Law in effect. I don't know what ILM used for digital editing, but in 1999 they very well may have been using a PowerMac G4, which is about equivalent to a Pentium 3, to render their video. Most smartphones have more processing power, now!

 

Another cool thing is all the drone technology now being used for filming, to get awesome angles. I am of the opinion they used a drone for the aerial shot of the Skellig Islands in TLJ.

 

Imagine what another 20 years will bring!

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Drones, digital stunt cams that fit in your hand but shoot 4K its insane how much the tech has changed in just the last few years.

 

Funny enough, as terrible as AOTC is, it started a new era as the first theatrically released movie shot digitally. Sixteen years later, its the standard.

 

Also, holy shit AOTC is sixteen years old!!!

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Guest El Chalupacabra

I would love for them to re-release the prequels with all of the CGI scrapped and done again from scratch.

I would be for that! The whole PT, actually. Though it might cost almost as much as shooting a movie, so might not see it for a while, unless Disney does like what Lucasfilm did with the OT, and re-release the PT films. It would also be nice to re-insert any cut material that helps explain things better, re-edit the movies for pacing, tweak dialogue in some scenes so that they aren't as clunky, or anything that just improves the movies overall.

 

Oddly, when it comes to the OT, I want Disney to restore them to their original cut, just with cleaned up graphics.

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Guest El Chalupacabra

I think one mistake Lucas made was that he didn't just try to make the best movies he could, he wanted the movies to push ahead movie making technology.

I think Lucas did the best he could. I don't think he went into making those with JUST the movie making agenda. The thing is, he didn't have the same team of people to help him that he did during the OT. His ex being one of them.

 

Maybe the story of the PT had things to be desired, but one positive thing about the PT is the world-building aspect.

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I think one mistake Lucas made was that he didn't just try to make the best movies he could, he wanted the movies to push ahead movie making technology.

I wouldn't say it's the ONE mistake he made-- cause he made a lot of them. I'd actually put not hiring screenwriters at the top of the list. That said, when you have an army of clones of dudes in suits and you don't have a single actual dude in a suit on set, your point is pretty damn apt.

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I didn;t say THE one, I just said one.

 

But yeah, he was trying to make a point. Starting from when on TPM they only built sets a few feet high and then extended them digitally. The OT was groundbreaking in effects cause it had to be. It was people using effects to make the movie the best they could. This was Lucas pushing the envelope just to push the envelope. What you say is true, in a huge battle scene sure have all the troopers be CGI. When Obi Wan is interacting with a single trooper, put a guy in a suit.

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