A true legend of special effects, Douglas Trumbull has died at the age of 79. He had notably worked on “2001: A Space Odyssey”, “Blade Runner”, “Encounters of the Third Kind” or even “The Tree of Life”.
Douglas Trumbull: a legend of special effects dies
Visual effects pioneer Douglas Trumbull has died at the age of 79, as reported variety. His daughter Amy announced the sad news via his Facebook account this Tuesday, February 8, 2022, revealing that his father fought for two years against cancer, a brain tumor, and a stroke.
In her moving post, she also said:
My sister Andromed and I were able to see him on Saturday and tell him we love him. We told her to enjoy and embrace her journey into the afterlife. I love you dad, I will miss you!
Douglas Trumbull was born on April 8, 1942, in Los Angeles. His father, Don Trumbull is a mechanical engineer. He works on reference visual effects like The Wizard of Oz and Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope. Her mother is an artist. He follows their paths starting out as an illustrator.
It contributes to To the Moon and Beyond short film that offers a journey from Earth into the universe made for the 1964 New York International Fair, which caught the attention of Stanley Kubrick.
Of 2001: A Space Odyssey at The Tree of Life
Douglas Trumbull serves as visual effects supervisor on 2001: A Space Odyssey and signs the unforgettable Stargate sequence. A true craftsman and pioneer of the pre-digital era, he then collaborated with Steven Spielberg on Encounters of the third kind, with Robert Wise on Star Trek: The Movie and with Ridley Scott on blade runner.
In addition to having directed many short films, he directs science fiction films SilentRunning and Brainstorm, respectively worn by Bruce Dern and Christopher Walken. After a break in his film career, he returns as visual effects consultant on The Tree of Life by Terrence Malick. In 2018, he produced the feature film The Man Who Killed Hitler and then Bigfoot with Sam Elliott.
In an exciting interview with Nicolas Saada published by Release in 2016, Douglas Trumbull explains his vision of his profession and cinema:
I don’t consider special effects as a separate object, because in fact, an entire film is above all a visual effect. If you look at things this way, when you shoot in a set, it’s already a trick, the lighting is a special effect, an accessory is a special effect, make-up, hairstyle are also special effects.
The film is an illusion, and everything that makes it is an illusion, starting with the simple shooting. And I don’t differentiate between tools. You have to have an overall vision. That’s why I see it as a director.