October 16, 2015

OPTICAL EFFECTS & MAGICAL MOMENTS: The latest screenshot-intensive post at the brilliant Matte Shot blog on how Hollywood accomplished its special effects prior to today’s current era of digital CGI:

I’ve always had a passion for old school optical effects mainly down to the fact that I just know how hard it was for these guys to make it all come together, where so many things could (and often did) go wrong during the delicate photo-chemical-mechanical procedure, thus requiring an entire retake, or often many retakes in fact, from scratch in order to gain a satisfying marry up of each strip of 35mm or 65mm film.  There were no ‘undo’ buttons nor ‘layers’ which could be quickly thumbed through in order that corrections be made to a particular element.  The optical process as it was prior to the move over to digital, was a slow, methodical and, possibly to some, unbelievably tiresome process.  I have great admiration for the folks celebrated here today and the wonders that they achieved.

And it definitely shows through; it’s a great blog to scroll through if you have any love of Hollywood’s golden era up to the 1980s.

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