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Feature
A History Of CGI In The Movies
The highs and lows of a game changer

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A History Of CGI In The Movies  | The Abyss
The Abyss

Year: 1989
Significance: Water effects

To create cinema’s first CG computer water effects, The Abyss’ worm-like subsea pseudopod, effects guru Phil Tippett pointed James Cameron towards George Lucas’ ILM. Work on the 75 second sequence was ultimately divvyed up between seven different FX houses, with ILM taking on the bulk of the work and designing a program that could simulate the watery beast-tube-thing with incredible realism. The whole process took more than six months – the set had to be photographed from every angle so the effects could be composited onto the live-action – which delayed the film’s release, but it was worth waiting for. Another Oscar winner.
 

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Your Comments

1 RE: RE:
Well clearly Star Trek II was beaten to it by several movies there. Flight of the Navigator should be included really though. More

Posted by rich on Thursday December 23, 2010, 22:01

2 RE: RE:
I think you missed out Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan - I've always been led to believe that the Genesis Device simulation was the first CGI sequence in cinema. More

Posted by Mandragora on Thursday December 23, 2010, 20:46

3 RE:
Classic film The Last Starfighter:) Surely it must be included as it had a floating camera during which showed the 3d space and super imposed cock pit space battles. Long before the star wars trilogy 1997 special eds. Also dont forget Flight of the Navigator (also 1985 i think) which had morphing and reflection effects on the ship. More

Posted by jimbosolo on Wednesday December 22, 2010, 14:49


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