From Paul Walker to Marlon Brando via Audrey Hepburn, Bruce Lee and his son Brandon, focus on 10 missing stars that technology has enabled to resuscitate on the screen.
Today, technology works wonders, allowing filmmakers and production companies to “resuscitate” missing stars. A posthumous return that is sometimes disturbing, either to complete the shooting of a film after the death of a protagonist, or as part of a simple tribute.
From Paul Walker to Marlon Brando via Audrey Hepburn and Brandon Lee, focus on 10 big names in cinema who have had a second life on the screen thanks to digital special effects. A list to discover above in which does not appear by Carrie Fisher, whose presence in the credits of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker was made possible thanks to the use of unpublished images of The Force Awakens.
November 30, 2013 Paul walker tragically died in a car accident. The filming of the feature film Fast & Furious 7, in which he finds his character of Brian O’Conner, is then immediately interrupted. The actor had not yet shot important scenes at the time of the drama, there is even talk of simply canceling the project.
But director James Wan and Universal Studios take a strong decision, with the support of Walker’s relatives: to bring the actor back to life with digital special effects for the face (signed Weta Digital, the company created by Peter Jackson), the rest of the body being voiced by his brothers Caleb and Cody. The filming of FF7 can thus come to an end and the memory of Paul Walker be honored.
Philip Seymour Hoffman
Philip Seymour Hoffman died in early 2014, when he still had to shoot a few scenes from Hunger Games – The Revolt: Part 2, feature film in which he played the magistrate Plutarch Heavensbee, an essential character in the story’s outcome. Certain passages of the film are then rewritten, camera angles modified and slight digital special effects used, the director Francis Lawrence wishing to use the latter as little as possible.
“I regret to have done this for what is his last film”, declared the scenario writer in comments made to The Guardian. “Because frankly, there is not enough Philip Seymour Hoffman in the film. I wish his role was more important.”
When Oliver Reed died aged 61, he didn’t complete all of his scenes from the Gladiator peplum, where he played the character of the freed slave Proximo. To revive the British actor and bring the filming to its conclusion, the director Ridley Scott then resorts to a dubbing and digital special effects. Cost to the studio: over $ 3 million!
“What we did was modest compared to our other challenges on the film,” said John Nelson, visual effects supervisor for Gladiator. “What Olivier did was so much more incredible. He delivered an inspiring, moving performance. All we did was help him finish his job.”
In Rogue One, the spin-off of the intergalactic Star Wars saga released in theaters in 2016, one of the most astonishing moments is without a doubt the appearance on the screen of Peter Cushing, who died in 1994, who is reprising his role. from Grand Moff Tarkin held years ago in A New Hope and Revenge of the Sith. At the helm of this technological feat, we find, inevitably, the Industrial Light and Magic studios of George Lucas, which combined digital special effects and motion capture with the help of actor Guy Henry.
“We basically used computer graphics as a tool to change the appearance of Peter Cushing”, explained in 2016 John Knoll, special effects supervisor on Rogue One, at the Yahoo microphone. “And it was done in cooperation with his heirs. It wouldn’t have been done without their agreement or if they weren’t comfortable with the idea.”
Like his father Bruce, who will be found a little later in this file, it was during the shooting of one of his films, The Crow, that Brandon lee find death. The actor is killed with a live bullet when the weapon was supposed to be blank loaded.
To complete the filming of the film, Alex Proyas then uses an understudy (Chad Stahelski, the future director of the John Wick saga) on which he digitally embeds the face of the late actor. It should be noted that to bring Brandon Lee back to life, the Dream Quest company will have needed … 600 hours of work!