The illusions used in the film, television,theater, or entertainment industries to simulate the imagined events in a story are traditionally called special effects (a. Television ( TV) is a widely used Telecommunication medium for sending ( Broadcasting) and receiving moving Images, either monochromatic Theatre (or theater, see spelling differences) is the branch of the Performing arts defined by Bernard Beckerman as what "occurs when one See also Entertainment (disambiguation and The Entertainer (disambiguation Entertainment is an activity designed to give people k. a. SFX, SPFX, or simply FX). In modern films, special effects are usually used to alter previously-filmed elements by adding, removing or enhancing objects within the scene. The use of special effects is more common in big-budget films, but affordable animation and compositing software enables even amateur filmmakers to create professional-looking effects. The bouncing ball animation (below consists of these 6 frames Compositing is the combining of visual elements from separate sources into single images often to create the illusion that all those elements are parts of the same scene
Special effects are traditionally divided into the categories of optical effects and mechanical effects. In recent years, a greater distinction between special effects and visual effects has been recognized, with "visual effects" referring to post-production and optical effects, and "special effects" referring to on-set mechanical effects. Visual effects (commonly shortened to Visual F/X or VFX) are the various processes by which imagery is created and/or manipulated outside the context of a Live
Optical effects (also called visual or photographic effects), are techniques in which images or film frames are created and manipulated for film and video. Optical effects are produced photographically, either "in-camera" using multiple exposure, mattes, or the Schüfftan process, or in post-production processes using an optical printer or video editing software. In Photography, a multiple exposure is an exposure in which the sensitivity to light is reduced and then increased at least once during the total exposure time For the technique of creating backgrounds see Matte painting. The Schüfftan process is a movie Special effect named after its inventor Eugen Schüfftan (1893&ndash1977 An optical printer is a device consisting of one or more film Projectors mechanically linked to a Movie camera. An optical effect might be used to place actors or sets against a different background, or make an animal appear to talk.
Mechanical effects (also called practical or physical effects), are usually accomplished during the live-action shooting. This includes the use of mechanized props, scenery and scale models, and pyrotechnics. A theatrical property, commonly referred to as a prop, is any object held or used on stage by an Actor for use in furthering the plot or story line of a Theatrical Theatrical scenery is that which is used as a setting for a Theatrical production A scale model is a representation or copy of an object that is larger or smaller than the actual size of the object. The term "pyrotechnics" can also be used for Fireworks events Making a car appear to drive by itself, or blowing up a building are examples of mechanical effects. Mechanical effects are often incorporated into set design and makeup. For example, a set may be built with break-away doors or walls, or prosthetic makeup can be used to make an actor look like a monster. Prosthetic makeup is the process of using Prosthetic sculpting molding and casting techniques to create advanced cosmetic effects.
Since the 1990s, computer generated imagery (CGI) has come to the forefront of special effects technologies. Computer animation Computer-generated imagery (also known as CGI) is the application of the field of Computer graphics or more specifically 3D computer graphics CGI gives film-makers greater control, and allows many effects to be accomplished more safely and convincingly -- and even, as technology marches on, at lower costs. As a result, many optical and mechanical effects techniques have been superseded by CGI.
In 1857, Oscar Gustave Rejlander created the world's first "trick photograph" by combining different regions of 32 other photographs into a single image. Oscar Gustave Rejlander ( Sweden 1813 &ndash Clapham, London on 18 January, 1875) was a pioneering Victorian art photographer In 1895, Alfred Clark created what is commonly accepted as the first-ever special effect on film. While filming a reenactment of the beheading of Mary, Queen of Scots, Clarke instructed an actor to step up to the block in Mary's costume. As the executioner brought the axe above his head, Clarke stopped the camera, had all of the actors freeze, and had the person playing Mary step off the set. He placed a Mary dummy in the actor's place, restarted filming, and allowed the executioner to bring the axe down, severing the dummy's head. “Such… techniques would remain at the heart of special effects production for the next century” (Rickitt, 10).
This was not only the first use of trickery in the cinema, it was the first type of photographic trickery that could only be done in a motion picture, i. e. the "stop trick".
In 1896, French magician Georges Méliès accidentally discovered the same "stop trick. Georges Méliès ( December 8, 1861 &ndash January 21, 1938) full name Marie-Georges-Jean Méliès, was a French This article is about the country For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic France topics. Georges Méliès ( December 8, 1861 &ndash January 21, 1938) full name Marie-Georges-Jean Méliès, was a French " According to Melies, his camera jammed while filming a street scene in Paris. When he screened the film, he found that the "stop trick" had caused a truck to turn into a hearse, pedestrians to change direction, and men turn into women. Melies, the stage manager at the Theatre Robert-Houdin, was inspired to develop a series of more than 500 short films, between 1896 and 1914, in the process developing or inventing such techniques as multiple exposures, time-lapse photography, dissolves, and hand painted colour. Events January - In Britain, Birt Acres and Robert W Paul developed their own film projector the Theatrograph (later known The year 1914 in film involved some significant events Events The 3300-seat Strand Theater opens in New York City. Time-lapse photography is a Cinematography technique whereby each Film frame is captured at a rate much slower than it will be played back Because of his ability to seemingly manipulate and transform reality with the cinematograph, the prolific Méliès is sometimes referred to as the "Cinemagician. The cinematograph is a film Camera, which also serves as a Film projector and developer " His most famous film, Le Voyage dans la lune (1902), a whimsical parody of Jules Verne's From the Earth to the Moon, featured a combination of live action and animation, and also incorporated extensive miniature and matte painting work. A Trip to the Moon (French fr Le Voyage dans la lune) is a 1902 French Black and white silent Science fiction Jules Gabriel Verne ( February 8 1828 &ndash March 24 1905) was a French Author who pioneered the science-fiction From the Earth to the Moon (De la Terre à la Lune 1865) is a humorous Science fantasy Novel by Jules Verne and is The bouncing ball animation (below consists of these 6 frames Technique Matte painting is a traditional Visual effects technique wherein a painted image is combined with film footage to alter enhance or extend the set
During the 1920s and 1930s, special effects techniques were improved and refined by the motion picture industry. Many techniques were modifications of illusions from the theater (such as pepper's ghost) and still photography (such as double exposure and matte compositing). For the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania -based rock ensemble see Pepper's Ghost (band. Rear projection was a refinement of the use of painted backgrounds in the theater – only substituting moving pictures to create moving backgrounds.
But several techniques soon developed that, like the "stop trick", were wholly original to motion pictures. Animation, creating the illusion of motion, was accomplished with drawings (most notably by Winsor McCay in Gertie the Dinosaur) and with three-dimensional models (most notably by Willis O'Brien in The Lost World and King Kong). The bouncing ball animation (below consists of these 6 frames Winsor McCay ( September 26 1867 (? – July 26 1934) was an American Cartoonist and Animator. Gertie the Dinosaur is a 1914 short animated film by Winsor McCay that inspired many generations of animators to bring their cartoons to Willis H "O'Bie" O'Brien ( March 2, 1886 - November 8, 1962) was a pioneering The Lost World is a 1925 Silent film adaptation of Arthur Conan Doyle 's book of the same name. King Kong is a landmark Black-and-white Adventure film about a gigantic Gorilla named " Kong " and how he is captured from Many studios established in-house "special effects" departments, which were responsible for nearly all optical and mechanical aspects of motion-picture trickery.
Also, the challenge of simulating spectacle in motion encouraged the development of the use of miniatures. Naval battles could be depicted with models in studio tanks, and airplanes could be flown (and crashed) without risk of life and limb. Most impressively, miniatures and matte paintings could be used to depict worlds that never existed. For the technique of creating backgrounds see Matte painting. Fritz Lang's film Metropolis was an early special effects spectacular, with innovative use of miniatures, matte paintings, the Schüfftan process, and complex compositing. Friedrich Christian Anton "Fritz" Lang ( December 5, 1890 &ndash August 2, 1976) was an Austrian German - American Metropolis is a silent Science fiction film directed by Fritz Lang and written by Lang and Thea von Harbou. The Schüfftan process is a movie Special effect named after its inventor Eugen Schüfftan (1893&ndash1977
An important innovation in special-effects photography was the development of the optical printer. An optical printer is a device consisting of one or more film Projectors mechanically linked to a Movie camera. Essentially, an optical printer is a projector aiming into a camera lens, and it was developed to make copies of films for distribution. Until Linwood G. Dunn, A. Linwood G Dunn, ASC ( December 27, 1904, Brooklyn New York - May 20, 1998, Los Angeles) was an Academy S. C. refined the design and use of the optical printer, effects shots were accomplished as in-camera effects. An in-camera effect is any Special effect in a video or movie that is created solely by using techniques in and on the Camera and/or its parts Dunn demonstrating that it could be used to combine images in novel ways and create new illusions. One early showcase for Dunn was Orson Welles' Citizen Kane, where such locations as Xanadu (and some of Gregg Toland, A. George Orson Welles (May 6 1915 – October 10 1985 was an Academy Award -winning director, writer actor and producer for film stage radio and television Citizen Kane ( 1941) is an American Dramatic film, and the first Feature film directed by Orson Welles, who also co-authored Xanadu is the fictional estate of Charles Foster Kane, the title character of the film Citizen Kane. Gregg Toland, ASC ( May 29, 1904 - September 26, 1948) was a highly influential American Cinematographer noted for his innovative S. C. 's famous 'deep focus' shots) were essentially created by Dunn's optical printer. Deep focus
The development of color photography required greater refinement of effects techniques. Also, color enabled the development of such travelling matte techniques as bluescreen and the sodium vapor process. Chroma Key is the name under which ex- Dream Theater Keyboardist Kevin Moore records The sodium vapor process (occasionally referred to as yellowscreen) is a technique for combining actors and background footage developed exclusively by The Walt Disney Many films became landmarks in special-effects accomplishments: Forbidden Planet used matte paintings, animation, and miniature work to create spectacular alien environments. Forbidden Planet is a 1956 Science fiction film directed by Fred M In The Ten Commandments, Paramount's John P. Fulton, A. The Ten Commandments is a 1956 motion picture that Dramatized the Biblical story of Moses, an adopted Egyptian John P Fulton, ASC (born 1902 in Nebraska and died October 1, 1965 in London, England) was an American special S. C. , multiplied the crowds of extras in the Exodus scenes with careful compositing, depicted the massive constructions of Rameses with models, and split the Red Sea in a still-impressive combination of travelling mattes and water tanks. The Red Sea is a Salt water Inlet of the Indian Ocean between Africa and Asia. Ray Harryhausen extended the art of stop-motion animation with his special techniques of compositing to create spectacular fantasy adventures such as Jason and the Argonauts (whose climax, a sword battle with seven animated skeletons, is considered a landmark in special effects). Ray Harryhausen (born Raymond Frederick Harryhausen on June 29, 1920 in Los Angeles California) is an Academy Award -winning
If one film could be said to have established a new high-water mark for special effects, it would be 1968's 2001: A Space Odyssey, directed by Stanley Kubrick, who assembled his own effects team (Douglas Trumbull, Tom Howard, Con Pedersen and Wally Veevers) rather than use an in-house effects unit. 2001 A Space Odyssey is a 1968 Science fiction film directed by Stanley Kubrick, written by Kubrick and Arthur C Douglas Trumbull (born April 8, 1942, Los Angeles) is an American Film director and Special effects supervisor In this film, the spaceship miniatures were highly detailed and carefully photographed for a realistic depth of field. In Optics, particularly as it relates to Film and Photography, the depth of field (DOF is the portion of a scene that appears sharp in the image The shots of spaceships were combined through hand-drawn rotoscopes and careful motion-control work, ensuring that the elements were precisely combined in the camera-- a surprising throwback to the silent era, but with spectacular results. Backgrounds of the African vistas in the "Dawn of Man" sequence were combined with soundstage photography via the then-new front projection technique. A front projection effect is an in-camera Visual effects process in Film production for combining foreground performance with pre-filmed background footage Scenes set in zero-gravity environments were staged with hidden wires, mirror shots, and large-scale rotating sets. The finale, a voyage through hallucinogenic scenery, was created by Douglas Trumbull using a new technique termed slit-scan. Douglas Trumbull (born April 8, 1942, Los Angeles) is an American Film director and Special effects supervisor The slit-scan photography technique is a photographic and cinematographic process where a moveable slide into which a slit has been cut is inserted between the Even today, the effects scenes remain impressive, realistic, and awe-inspiring.
The 1970s provided two profound changes in the special effects trade. The first was economic: during the industry's recession in the late 1960s and early 1970s, many studios closed down their in-house effects houses. Many technicians became freelancers or founded their own effects companies, sometimes specializing on particular techniques (opticals, animation, etc. ).
The second was precipitated by the blockbuster success of two science fiction and fantasy films in 1977. George Lucas's Star Wars ushered in an era of fantasy films with expensive and impressive special-effects. George Walton Lucas Jr (born May 14, 1944) is an Academy Award -winning American Film director, producer, Screenwriter Star Wars Episode IV A New Hope (originally released as Star Wars) is a 1977 Space opera Effects supervisor John Dykstra, A. S. C. and crew developed many improvements in existing effects technology. They developed a computer-controlled camera rig called the "Dykstraflex" that allowed precise repeatability of camera motion, greatly facilitating travelling-matte compositing. Degradation of film images during compositing was minimized by other innovations: the Dykstraflex used VistaVision cameras that photographed widescreen images horizontally along stock, using far more of the film per frame, and thinner-emulsion filmstocks were used in the compositing process. VistaVision is a variant of the 35 mm motion picture film format created by Paramount Pictures in 1954 based on the Glamorama and Superama A widescreen image is a film computer or television image with a wider and shorter aspect ratio than the standard Academy frame developed during the Classical The effects crew assembled by Lucas and Dykstra was dubbed Industrial Light and Magic, and since 1977 has spearheaded most effects innovations. Industrial Light & Magic ( ILM) is a motion picture Visual effects company that was founded in May 1975 by George Lucas and is owned
That same year, Steven Spielberg's film Close Encounters of the Third Kind boasted a finale with impressive special effects by 2001 veteran Douglas Trumbull. Steven Allan Spielberg, KBE (Hon (born December 18 1946 is an American Film director, Screenwriter and producer. Close Encounters of the Third Kind is a 1977 Science fiction film directed and written by Steven Spielberg. Douglas Trumbull (born April 8, 1942, Los Angeles) is an American Film director and Special effects supervisor In addition to developing his own motion-control system, Trumbull also developed techniques for creating intentional "lens flare" (the shapes created by light reflecting in camera lenses) to provide the film's undefinable shapes of flying saucers. Lens flare is the light scattered in lens systems through generally unwanted image formation mechanisms such as internal reflection and Scattering from
The success of these films, and others since, has prompted massive studio investment in effects-heavy fantasy films. This has fuelled the establishment of many independent effects houses, a tremendous degree of refinement of existing techniques, and the development of new techniques such as CGI. It has also encouraged within the industry a greater distinction between special effects and visual effects; the latter is used to characterize post-production and optical work, while special effects refers more often to on-set and mechanical effects. Visual effects (commonly shortened to Visual F/X or VFX) are the various processes by which imagery is created and/or manipulated outside the context of a Live
A recent and profound innovation in special effects has been the development of computer generated imagery, or CGI, which has changed nearly every aspect of motion picture special effects. Computer animation Computer-generated imagery (also known as CGI) is the application of the field of Computer graphics or more specifically 3D computer graphics Digital compositing allows far more control and creative freedom than optical compositing, and does not degrade the image like analog (optical) processes. Digital imagery has enabled technicians to create detailed models, matte "paintings," and even fully-realized characters with the malleability of computer software.
The most spectacular use of CGI has been the creation of photographically-realistic images of fantasy creations. Images could be created in a computer using the techniques of animated cartoons or model animation. (In 1993, stop-motion animators working on the realistic dinosaurs of Steven Spielberg's Jurassic Park were retrained in the use of computer input devices. Steven Allan Spielberg, KBE (Hon (born December 18 1946 is an American Film director, Screenwriter and producer. Jurassic Park is a 1993 Science fiction film directed by Steven Spielberg and based on the novel of the same name by Michael ) By 1995, films such as Toy Story underscored that the distinction between live-action films and animated films was no longer clear. Toy Story is a 1995 American computer-generated Comedy film, directed by John Lasseter and starring Tom Hanks Other landmark examples include a moving stained-glass window in Young Sherlock Holmes, a tentacle of water in The Abyss, the remastered Yoda from Attack of the Clones, in a 'liquid metal' villain in Terminator 2: Judgment Day, and hordes of armies of fantastic creatures in The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Young Sherlock Holmes ( 1985) directed by Barry Levinson and written by Chris Columbus, depicts a young Sherlock Holmes and The Abyss is a Science fiction film that was written and directed by James Cameron in 1989. Yoda is a Fictional character from the Star Wars universe, who appears in all of the franchise 's films except for Star Wars Star Wars Episode II Attack of the Clones is a 2002 Film directed by George Lucas and written by Lucas and Jonathan Hales Terminator 2 Judgment Day, commonly abbreviated as T2, is a 1991 action / Science fiction film directed co-written The Lord of the Rings film trilogy consists of three Live action Fantasy Epic films The Fellowship of the Ring ( 2001
Although most special effects work is completed during post-production, it must be carefully planned and choreographed in pre-production and production. See also Filmmaking Post-production occurs in the making of motion pictures, television programs, Videos audio recordings See also Filmmaking Pre-production is the process of preparing all the elements involved in a Film, play, or other Performance. Filmmaking is the process of making a Film, from an initial story idea or commission through scriptwriting shooting editing and finally distribution to an audience A Visual effects supervisor is usually involved with the production from an early stage to work closely with the Director and all related personnel to achieve the desired effects. In the context of Film and Television production a visual effects supervisor is responsible for achieving the creative aims of the director and/or producers through
Live special effects are effects that are used in front of a live audience. Mostly during sporting events, concerts and corporate shows. Types of effects that are commonly used include a laser lighting, CO2 effects, pyrotechnics, confetti and other atmospheric effects such as bubbles and snow. A laser lighting display or laser Light show involves the use of Laser light to entertain an audience Theatrical smoke and fog, also known as special effect smoke, fog or haze, is a category of The term "pyrotechnics" can also be used for Fireworks events Confetti (the singular form is confetto) is a multitude of pieces of Paper or metallic material which is