Green screens are a commonly used object to create an effect in a film or TV show. While using one as a background or a part of a set is the most well-known manner, there are a few other ways to do it as well. Sometimes green screen effects are so well-done, you don’t even question how they may have managed to make some of these effects. Well, here’s a few photos of what some famous scenes looked like before they were edited.
Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix
A lot of work goes into making a movie world seem as fantastical as we want it to be. And the Harry Potter franchise is no stranger to this. Even minor effects like making a book seemingly float into place requires an invisible hand or two.
Game Of Thrones
The dragons in Game of Thrones are all marvels and well-made using special effects. But when you strip away those effects you’re left with things like this. Emilia Clarke really made that dragon petting look convincing, even though she was really petting a pillow.
Life Of Pi
Life of Pi is a film that takes place completely on the open ocean. Of course, it’d be difficult and dangerous to film there, so the movie was filmed on a set. While some of the water was real, the beautiful backgrounds and, of course, the animals, were all completely computer generated.
So much of the original Space Jam was filmed on green screen. You can actually forgive any weakness in Michael Jordan’s performance when you see what he was working off of. Everything was green, with the only exceptions being himself, Bill Murray, and Wayne Knight. And the latter two actors only briefly appeared in the toon portions of the movie.
Of course the film Titanic was filmed on a sound stage. It’s hard to film a movie like that on a sinking ship. Although, it appears as though more of the set from the iconic “I’m flying” scene was green screened than one would initially expect.
The Hulk was the only completely CGI main character in the first Avengers film. They’ve really perfected motion capture technology and green screen since then. Not that the final product was bad in the film. Regardless, you have to admit that seeing this with the effects stripped away looks ridiculous.
Mad Max: Fury Road
While the movie was filmed on location, Mad Max: Fury Road also had some shots done on a sound stage. It’d be a lot more dangerous to do all those car stunts without a green screen anyway. It appears as though they’re supposed to be crashing a car with this one.
Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest
When you have a crew of fish people in your movie, it’s going to be hard to get away with them looking realistic, or at least intimidating, without CGI. In Dead Man’s Chest a lot of the lesser crew members had motion capture suits on. Bill Nighy, the actor for Davy Jones, had one of those suits on as well as some additional makeup to help with the process. He did have a living octopus for a beard after all.
I Am Legend
I Am Legend had a few differences from other versions of the story. One such example is when he was attacked by vampire dogs. While they’re more clearly computer generated to a seasoned audience, it’s hilarious to see what things actually looked like before they added in the special effects.
Guardians Of The Galaxy
Sean Gunn is credited as doing the motion capture for Rocket Raccoon in the Guardians of the Galaxy films. Despite the raccoon’s diminutive size, Sean does a pretty good job at capturing Rocket’s movements. But seeing Dave Bautista pet a grown man in a green jumpsuit is just impossible to not laugh at.
You ever wonder how the characters in The Matrix do all those crazy stunts. Keanu Reeves at one point does a full 180 degree turn on his back after all in his famous dodging bullet scene. Well, when filming on a green screen you have a few liberties you might not otherwise be able to take. Like having people in suits put up planks for your actors to lean against.
This effect here really shows you how you only really need a few panels of green screen to get the job done. The entire background for this wide-shot was digitally edited to have a bay in the background. It looks a little more fake than average, but Boardwalk Empire only had a TV budget, as opposed to a full film’s worth.
Beauty And The Beast
A tale as old as time! There’s a joke about the making of this movie saying that Emma Watson deserved an Oscar for her portrayal of Belle in the live action remake of Beauty and the Beast. And that would be because of what the Beast looked like without any effects. These motion capture suits already look pretty silly, but pumps make it even more silly-looking.
X-Men: Days Of Future Past
The X-Men franchise is well-known for its various special effects. You’re gonna need plenty in order to bring those mutant powers to life. In Days of Future Past, during the final battle at White House, the background was clearly green screened. And then there’s of course the rebar and wires necessary for when Magneto lifts Logan into the air.
How much of the 2014 version of Godzilla did you think was real? Cause the answer is just the actors. It makes sense though. It would be incredibly expensive to film on the Golden Gate Bridge. And it’s not like there are any real-life giant lizards with atomic breath walking around.
Kill Bill Vol. 1
The Bride does look a little floaty in the big brawl against the Crazy 88s in Kill Bill Vol. 1. That’s cause she’s on wires for the stunts. Although, Uma Thurman was still responsible for a majority of her own stunts.
Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes
We all know that the apes in the Planet of the Apes films aren’t real apes, they’re people. But you never really stop to think about what they look like before the effects. Andy Serkis is a master of motion capture, but you can’t deny how silly he looks.
A lot more of 300 was filmed on a green screen than you might initially suspect. Xerxes here is supposed to be addressing his subjects. But in reality there are no subjects to prostrate before him.
The Robocop remake tried to be a lot more serious than its predecessor. Using both green screen and motion capture, it did at least get the feel of a gritty, sci-fi future right.
The Chronicles Of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch, And The Wardrobe
The Chronicles of Narnia is a very interesting fantasy series. But with the sprawling landscapes, wintry and spring forests, and talking animals, there’s gotta be some special effects. This one is Lucy and Susan riding on Aslan to the big battle at the end of the film.
The Wolf Of Wall Street
The Wolf of Wall Street was filmed on sets. As it turns out, most of the fake stuff in the movie is just the background. It’s just cheaper than renting a boat, at least in the situation that this part of the movie was filmed.
Man Of Steel
Looking at Henry Cavill fly around as Superman looks completely ridiculous with all the effects stripped away. He’s rigged up on all these wires, floating in a green room, and he isn’t even wearing a cape! The Superman cape in the DC Extended Universe is completely computer generated.
The Hunger Games
In The Hunger Games we periodically switch over to the game makers, the people that control the titular games in attempts to kill the tributes. Well, their high-tech boards are really just green desks. It makes you wonder what the director told them to do so it looked realistic.
Iron Man 2
Almost every Marvel movie is filmed on a big set. And those same movies also use a lot of motion capture. RDJ and Don Cheadle look a bit silly with just the helmets of their famous armors on.
Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince
Without that movie magic, the Harry Potter movies would look really bland and lifeless. The Quidditch scenes probably suffer the most, especially in later films. The difference between the two images here is like night and day.