Space used to be the final frontier, but now we go there all the time … in movies.
Some of the earliest films ever made were about travel from Earth to space. Nothing has changed. The fascination of mankind for space and what is “out there” has always been predominant. From people looking up at the sky to billionaires flying away, space conquers our hearts and minds.
Today more than ever we are realizing some of the most interesting and exciting space projects for film and television. Technology has gotten better, but how has it evolved from the beginning to the present day?
Check out this video from insider, and let’s talk after the jump.
I’ve always been a space nerd. I loved seeing things like 1902 A trip to the moon and even 50s Target moonwhere they use wires to lift the actors off the floor. Still, growing up with a love of space movies means seeing the eventual shift away from practical effects and towards something else. They still use wire technology to this day, but science and science fiction are constantly evolving. And Hollywood is growing right next to it.
Even 2001: A Space Odyssey broke new ground when Stanley Kubrick and the crew built a centrifuge and camera rig to better capture inverted ship movements. We were blown away by these images then as now – it was about innovation.
George Lucas took space battles to the next level in the first with motion control cameras war of stars Movie. And Ron Howard used the actual weightlessness in Apollo 13, how he let his crew ride the Vomit Comet. Tom Hanks, Kevin Bacon and Bill Paxton found themselves in a true weightless environment thanks to an airplane that free falls and lets you levitate.
Of course, not everyone is on such a budget, and CGI and VFX with a mix of cables have replaced a lot of them for space films today. Gravity, first man, and Interstellar used groundbreaking CGI and LED projection to make the space look more realistic. And even ILM is building up war of stars with StageCraft, which adds various backgrounds and assets related to practical sets.
As you can see, the journey to make space even more realistic is a constant battle between innovation and technology. Who knows what the next few decades will bring, but I’ll be there and watch the films. Will you?