Computer Graphics From a Long, Long Time Ago in a Galaxy Far, Far Away

By Rob Bricken in Movies, Tech
Wednesday, November 18, 2009 at 9:11 am

Oh man. /Film started my day with this 10-minute documentary from Larry Cuba about how he made the computer graphics for Star Wars, specifically, the Death Star assault video Dodonna plays for the Rebel pilots, and it is so, so awesome. Cuba is obviously so proud when he says he's moving his Death Star model in real time, and he should be, since back in 1976 that probably needed 400 computers glued together and the blood sacrifice of a white calf. Anyways, it's fun for Star Wars fans and a neat look back for computer nerds alike.

And it reminds me of something -- when the Star Wars special editions were about to come out in '97, I was certain that Lucas was going to redo those computer effects, like from the Rebel briefing and on the Millennium Falcon's display during the TIE Fighter dogfight. Dead certain, because if anything dated the Star Wars movies (besides Hamill's hair) it was the computer effects. Compared to some of the shit that went in the special editions, these would be pretty easy changes to make, don't you think? And they wouldn't be nearly as obtrusive. And I don't think fans would mind that update -- I know I wouldn't. I'm still baffled as to why Lucas didn't bother to change 'em.

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