Netflix and chill has taken over the world these days. But who's complaining? It's not the worst way to unwind on a weeknight, by a long shot! After a trance of movie magic, people sometimes wonder how those Hollywood folks make it all so believable. What's going on behind the scenes, and off the screens?
CGI is now used for the latest 3D graphics for characters, backgrounds, and special effects in films and TV. And it's elevated the whole game! Technology gets even better every day, but how did the studios manage before?
A classic, like no other. Back To The Future brought fans a totally new time machine concept, easy as retrofitting a DeLorean with a flux capacitor. The car only required 1.21 gigawatts of power to travel 88 mph, and then, voila — time travel.
In real life, of course, the car had none of these novel features. The technology didn't exist in the 1980's, and certainly doesn't today! Universal Studios put its special effects department to work, and they found an alternative solution.
Marie Antoinette was the queen of France before the French Revolution. A director with a hipster flair, Sofia Coppola knew that she wanted to show audiences a very modern version of this tale.
Although she was draped in exquisite gowns and surrounded by old scenery, Kirsten still found the time to unwind with costar Jason Schwartzman. In fact, no one else on set would be better for a playlist session in between takes.
Many claim to love horror films, but few can handle the terror of A Nightmare on Elm Street. Very few are quite as frightening, and it's all because of Freddy Kruger!
Freddy was played by actor Robert Englund, and he differed significantly from his character. For one thing, no visible claws. But more importantly, his personality was a ray of sunshine!
The world of Harry Potter was full of potions and spells, in between some very complicated relationships. In the books and movies, Dumbledore vs. Lord Voldemort represented good vs. evil. And it was quite a contrast!
Actually, actors do have the ability to pretend to be someone they are not. In this case, Michael Gambon and Ralph Fiennes were both doing just that!
The Godzilla franchise has been one of the longest series of films, with an amazing 33 to date! The concept was launched back in 1954, first as a prehistoric monster who stomps around and destroys all buildings in his quake.
As it turns out, things were decidedly low-tech, back then. Haruo Nakajima was one of the two actors who played Godzilla. But he was much shorter in real life, at 1.68 m. That's only five foot five!
Ghostbusters is just one of those classics. It even had a catchy song! While the recent remake with ladies did okay at the box office, the original was in a league of its own.
Today, these simply effects would be no big deal. But at the time, there were a lot of challenges with so many different types of ghosts. Remember, this was before CGI!
They were unforgettable. "Come and play with us, Danny, forever, and ever, and ever," they said. Twins from hell, The Shining wouldn't have been the same without them.
It turns out they are just the Burns sisters. Perfectly normal identical twins, in fact! In the books, the characters were sisters separated by 2 years, but the real actresses were the same age. The director loved it!
Yet again, a freaky Stephen King project. What is with this guy, anyway? With his 1986 novel “It” and the character Pennywise, he single-handedly managed to turn clowns into the scariest creatures in horror history!
Tim Curry said that his transformation took three hours in the make up chair! While that may seem like a lot, the chilling effect was proportionate.
Set in make believe world of Middle-earth, the LOTR films taught audiences a lot about hobbits. And elves, and trolls!
Principal filming took place min one very remote country: New Zealand, where there are more sheep than humans! Many locations were used in national parks and conservation areas. And they weren't all easy to reach!
Still an Oscar record holder to this day, James Cameron's Titanic was a pretty big deal when it came out. The ship that sank really got a new life in 1997, and top quality acting was only part of the story.
The answer is, it took teamwork. With everyone was lined up to ensure safety, crash mats and an emergency crew were on standby so there were no real plummeting-to-her-death moments. Thankfully, so!
C-3PO understood more than anyone that hanging out with Jedis could be exhausting. But luckily, he was a machine!
Anthony Daniels is the actor who played the polite robot, as longtime fans may already know. His original costume was roughened so the metal would not reflect too much light. Could be distracting, otherwise!
Inception could not have been a bigger deal, back in 2010. The combination of science fiction and action inside of layers of lucid dreams was confusing. But it was also intriguing!
Au contraire, at least for the dream sequences. Christopher Nolan opted for little computer-generation, using practical effects where he could. What was the method behind the madness?
The Jungle Book has had its fair share of attention, to say the least. Originally published in 1894 by Rudyard Kipling, the tale has become nothing but legendary. An orphaned boy and talking animals in an Indian jungle? Yes, please!
Nearly 70 differently species native to India were included in the movie. But it was all wild effects: Characters came to life entirely through computer animation. Combining real animal movement and real actor mannerisms, the characters were made to believably speak!
Millions agree: Forrest Gump might just be the perfect movie. The unique comedy-drama is almost hard to categorize in a genre, and audiences still laugh and cry when they revisit this classic today. And for good reason!
For Lieutenant Dan Taylor, Vietnam meant permanent disability. When the character was scripted to lose both of his legs, studio techs got right to work. How did they achieve the impressive result, way back in the 90's?
90's audiences thoroughly enjoyed a series of epic blockbusters, and Independence Day was no exception. When it hit theaters everywhere, an alien takeover over of America suddenly seemed all too real!
Because Independence Day was made just before CGI became a norm in Hollywood, the crew used other tried but true expert techniques to achieve the same effect.
The Ten Commandments has been going strong since 1956. Literally, for generations! It's on network TV every Easter Sunday in the United States, that special time slot when millions enjoy the Exodus in technicolor.
While much of the movie was filmed in Hollywood and footage from Egypt was used, believe it or not, the film crew really did travel to Egypt to shoot some scenes. Yes, the famous Exodus, Sinai, and Red Sea sequences!
Who Framed Roger Rabbit is not quite like any other movie of the time, or any since! Combining animation with live action, that snappy script really came to life in a way audiences had never seen before.
As it turns out: A little bit of this, a little bit of that. All the animation was accomplished using cels and something called optical compositing. Yes, there was a world before CGI!
No one had an easy time falling asleep after watching Halloween with Michael Myers! Truly a frightening character, he stalked babysitters and left theater audiences on the edge of their seats. Yikes!
Nicholas Castle is a perfectly normal screenwriter, director and actor. But way back in 1978, he played this iconic role! How did he get mixed up in the madness?
Just about everyone remembers the iconic movie Matrix where Neo realizes that the world he lives in is actually dominated by machines.
Probably the most essential character in the film is Hugo Weaving who is an agent that can duplicate himself in order to take over other agents.
Uma Thurman played Quentin Tarantino's vengeful bride in Kill Bill who wanted to destroy everyone she felt betrayed her. She had one heck of a long list of people to exact her revenge on.
When the cameras were rolling, these two actors were the worst of enemies.
The 1959 mega film Ben-Hur starred Charlton Heston and Stephen Boyd. Modern audiences may have forgotten it, but it was a pretty big deal at the time. Especially the action scenes!
In terms of the rivalry, not at all. Off screen, these two mega actors did not pick up chariot racing in an event to wipe each other out. Surprise, surprise!
Guardian of the Galaxy is the MCU film that developed an enormous following with great reactions, hysterical dialog, awesome 80's soundtrack, and without a doubt an amazing cast!
Clearly, Kurt Russel who portrayed Ego is in dire need of a really good nap!
Maybe in the real world, British actor Tom Hardy might just be a complete heart-throb, but in Dark Knight Rises, his character is anything but appealing!
Even though the characters Batman and Bane are arch enemies in the film, this shot shows that Christian Bale and Tom Hardy are having a really good time between shoots!
As we are on a roll with famous franchises, let's not overlook the blockbuster films, Jurassic Park! As time has moved on, these films have continually improved thanks to technology and special effects. In no way does any of this take away from the original masterpiece!
From the time of the first Jurassic Park til now, there is no doubt why we are really lucky these big guys no longer walk the earth! Scenes like these huge creatures approaching their next human victim will make your blood run cold!
Probably one of our favorite franchises are the Bond films that are based on the spy novels by Ian Fleming. One of the most famous and popular films from the franchise is Goldfinger released in 1964 starring Sean Connery.
The really horrible part of her death was caused by her skin being covered in gold which led to suffocation. Well, take a big sigh of relief looking at these photos.
At some point, even Disney needed to jump on the bandwagon by bringing back some of our favorite movies, including Beauty and the Beast.
There is no doubt that Emma Watson looked absolutely stunning as Belle but too bad we couldn't get to see Dan Stevens when he wasn't a CGI beast.
Millions of people around the world have found connections and love for the Star Wars characters including Han Solo, Chewbacca, Princess Leia, C3PO, and of course R2-D2.
Even though we really do know everything is unreal, there is something about seeing an actor sitting in the R2-D2 costume, as you can see in the photograph.
It's really wild to realize that Rocket Raccoon was brought to life thanks to two different actors!
If that isn't mind-boggling enough, this photo of Drax petting a man in a green suit rather than a raccoon leaves some further questions.
Life of Pi is based on the exceptional novel that only has two characters. The story is about a man and a tiger are stranded in a boat in the middle of the ocean.
This is how it worked out. Instead of a real living, breathing tiger, there's a plush toy and a boat that is situated on a set.
For Maleficent 2, Angelina Jolie said her intention was to be a “Film Noir Goddess” in terms of costume. But it turns out there were a few little fashion critics on set. And by little, we mean her kids!
Pan's Labyrinth was a magical experience for audiences to watch!
We all remember how Fain went to any lengths to entice the main character into the underworld.
Everything seems so real, that it's really difficult to wrap your brain around that Arbie, in the Terminator, really is a human being and not a cyborg with metallic arms and body parts.
Surprise, surprise – in reality, a crew member sat on the floor while holding a prosthetic limb to create the image of a solid Arnie!
It's a fact that all producers and directors will go out of their way to ensure every scene in a movie is absolutely perfect!
In some cases, they can take some shortcuts. For instance in this shot, instead of coming up with a trunk full of jewels, they used a cardboard cutout!
Like many superheroes, Spiderman has several impressive skills up his sleeve! He shoots webs out of his fingers so he can hang upside down and can scale buildings with the greatest of ease!
I guess the effects would be lost if you suddenly realized he had bungee cords attached to his suit and the assistance of a crew member who propped him up! Come on now guys!
All of the Harry Potter movies have given us so much magic and mystery! They have also given us some of the most beloved characters such as Hermione Granger!
The beauty of magic, what you never got to see were the green hands peeking through the bookshelves waiting to grab the books from her hands!
When filming Lord of the Rings, there were no tricks or body types they didn't use to get the exact appearance needed. Giants, Hobbits, Wizards, and Elves all had to appear as completely natural and balanced.
There was nothing simple and easy to balance off Gandalf's size in comparison to the hobbits. In one scene, they brought in a seven-foot-tall body double to replace McKellen when he was talking to Frodo.
Talk about dazzling! Avatar is without a doubt one of the most stunning movies ever made! The blue avatars definitely needed some serious CGI and very special effects.
Although the actors only donned pointed ears, the outstanding characteristics of the avatars are their blue skin and pointed ears!
Needless to say, The Godfather is probably one of the most memorable films of all time. Who could ever forget the legendary actor Marlon Brando as Don Corleone!
Well looking at these photos, it's pretty clear the real Don is Francis Ford Coppola.
The 1989 version of Batman was as iconic as it comes, partly due to it being directed by the one and only Tim Burton.
While his quirky performance stole the show and gave everyone the shivers, this behind-the-scene pic of Nicholson getting his makeup done reminds us that this was just a character.
Another Tim Burton classic is the one and only Edward Scissorhands. The film has a cult-like following and was one of Burton and Depp’s first collaborations.
This photo is plain adorable. It shows Johnny Depp pre-Scissorhands makeup but already with those scary hands hugging a sweet-faced Winona Ryder.
The Terminator really brought Arnold Schwarzenegger to the front field of the acting world.
While Schwarzenegger’s on-screen portrayal of the Terminator was a calculated half cyborg killing machine, this photo from backstage shows Arnold and Cameron chilling side by side - no assassin plans going on over here!
Who can forget Christopher Reeves and his iconic portrayal in most would say the best Superman movies to date.
This behind the scene photo of Superman literally seeming to fly proves that technology and CGI effects are not always needed to create some of the best effects in the film industry!
The film One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest is considered one of the greatest films ever made and we have to agree!
This iconic behind-the-scene photo shows the whole cast having some fun, nurses, and patients.
What is an iconic movie list without at least one mention of Pulp Fiction? One of Quentin Tarantino’s most iconic films featuring his muse Uma Thurman and John Travolta amongst other stars.
This behind-the-scenes shot shows the filming of that very dance scene.
Joker is breaking the bank right now, and the box office is pretty happy about it! The fans of this film seem to be super-fans, and many want to know more about Joaquin Phoenix’s acting process in the movie. Were all those crazy little quirks pre-planned by the writers, or was it all genius improv?