Movie VFX pros revisit the visual effects from the Star Wars prequels

No matter whether your memories of George Lucas' Star Wars prequels are fond or furious, there's no denying that, at the time that films were released, their cutting-edge visual effects were unlike anything else out there--but how do they hold up today? It's a question that the VFX experts at CorridorCrew take the time to answer.

Over the course of this fun 15-minute video, the 'Crew examine what of the prequels' VFX still hold up, what mistakes were made and, in some occasions, what didn't work, even at the time that the movies were released.

Image via Wikipedia Read the rest

Watch George's Lucas's 1967 student short-film "Electronic Labyrinth: THX 1138 4EB"

Dust is a YouTube channel for short science fiction movies. Today they are showing George's Lucas's 1967 student short-film "Electronic Labyrinth: THX 1138 4EB"

"While monitored and pursued, a man races to escape through a futuristic labyrinth. "Electronic Labyrinth THX 1138 4EB" by Star Wars creator George Lucas was the student film that helped launch his film career. Dust is proud to present it to you as part of USC Student Week."

From Wikipedia:

Lucas had had an idea for a long time "based on the concept that we live in the future and that you could make a futuristic film using existing stuff". Fellow USC students Matthew Robbins and Walter Murch had a similar idea which Robbins developed into a short treatment, but Robbins and Murch lost interest in the idea, whereas Lucas was keen to persist.

One of Lucas' USC instructors suggested an opportunity for Lucas to make the short film that he had in mind: since the 1940s, the USC film school had had a working arrangement with the US Navy, whereby Navy filmmakers attended USC for additional study. Teaching the class was not popular amongst USC staff, as the Navy filmmakers often had rigid, preconceived ideas about filmmaking, and sometimes misbehaved in class. But the Navy paid for unlimited color film, and lab processing costs, for their students. Lucas offered to teach the class, and was allowed the opportunity.

The Navy men formed the crew of the film, and some appeared in the cast. Because of the Navy connection, Lucas was able to access filming locations which would not otherwise have been available to him: the USC computer center, a parking lot at UCLA, the Los Angeles International Airport, and the Van Nuys Airport.

Read the rest

Watch Carrie Fisher roast George Lucas

Carrie Fisher kills it at the American Film Institute's 2005 Life Achievement Award honoring George Lucas.

Read the rest

Dan Golding's brilliant response to the Marvel soundtrack originality debate

After Every Frame a Painting analyzed The Marvel Symphonic Universe (see last week's post), Dan Golding expanded on that great video arguing that film music, and films themselves, have an interesting relationship with originality. Read the rest

Original Star Wars trilogy scribe Lawrence Kasdan reportedly attached to new trilogy, plus Simon Kinberg

That didn't take long: within one month, we got all of our screenwriters lined up for the new Disney-Lucasfilm Star Wars trilogy, and one of them is a pretty reliable man for the job. As we reported earlier, Michael Arndt will be taking Episode VII, and now it's being reported that Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg will take on Episodes VIII and IX, though it's unspecified who will take which script. If you recall, Kasdan wrote both Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, and if I may make a wild prediction, I'm going to call the final episode for him. Let the veteran round out the new trilogy. Kinberg is also hardly a slouch, having written Mr. and Mrs. Smith and Sherlock Holmes, plus he's currently writing the sequel to X-Men: First Class, on which he was a producer. (In other words, experience in sci-fi/fantasy franchises.) Both Kasdan and Kinberg will also join Kathleen Kennedy as producers on both films.

All three of the new movies will be based on story notes from George Lucas, but will be written and directed by others. Probably the best thing for Star Wars that George Lucas could ever do at this point.

The Hollywood Reporter (and several other sites) seem to have this news all but confirmed. Disney-Lucasfilm have not offered a comment yet, except to say that they will make an official announcement on StarWars.com, where they confirmed Arndt's role. For the moment, that is still the most recent news item. Read the rest

TOM THE DANCING BUG: George Lucas Revises the Decade Since 9/11!

Read the rest