I recently watched Guardians of the Galaxy (Marvel fan in the house) and realized my favorite character in the movie was a genetically modified raccoon - Rocket. No points for guessing that Rocket was created in a fancy high end computer (at Framestore Studio for those who want to know). The beauty of the movie is that you never feel even for a second that Rocket isn't 'human.' So many shots in the movie seem just insane – the land of Morag, the capital Xandar, the Kyln prison sequence – the list just goes on. It got me talking to a couple of aspiring filmmaker friends of mine that are movies slowly moving from being created on 'real sets' to 24-inch computer screens?
As a lay person who has seen movies like Avatar, Gravity, Life of Pi, to name a few, I've been thinking that the amount of the movie being shot on a real stage is so farrrr less than what is computer-generated. Some of my friends agreed. Life of Pi is a case in point. The part with the lead character and his boat was shot in a wave pool on a sound stage. But the sky, the ocean, the island, the meerkats and oh yeah the tiger - making up 80 % of the movie – were created by hundreds of CGI and VFX artists. There is no doubt that without CGI and VFX we would have fabulous concepts that looked extremely ridiculous.
Now both sides, the extreme CGI and the 'We shoot everything you see,' had numerous such examples. And yes most movies are a mix of both these techniques. I for one was just left awestruck by both. Full marks to everyone around going to such great lengths to tantalize our sense of awe every time we go to a movie.
Frankly, be it a creation on a computer or a real life creation, I'm just happy to be part of a world where such things are even possible. Aren't you?!?