Will CGI kill the video star?

Tintin was epic. It managed to give near three hours of rollicking entertainment, bringing alive the twelve year old thrill seeker inside me. Speilberg and Peter Jackson did a more than decent job of doing justice to the comic book. The entire thing was done in cgi, using motion capture technology. Meaning real actors donned motion capture suits and acted out the scenes, which were then renderd into an an animated universe.

It was so real that at times you could hardly tell the difference. This made me think of creative destruction and how it might affect the movie industry soon, or later. Actors haven’t taken a real hit from economic forces for a good few decades now. There was the advent of silent film, which put a few radio stars out of business,  then there was actual audio in film which probably put a few mute and hoarse voiced actors out of business. But after that, acting was pretty much acting, you dream of it when young, escape a dreary rural existence and go out and become a star ot thereabouts.

Tintin only uses real actors behind the scenes though. The faces are competely artificial; a hybrid of many faces aimed to match the comicbook journalist as closely as possible. If this catches on, soon the movie industry might face a whole new phase of creative destruction, the old being destoyed to give way to the new; real actors giving way to artificial ones. Better looking artificial ones; fitter, more agile and capable of delivering far more camera angles at far lower budgets than can be even dreamt of in the real world. By ‘soon’ i probably mean a good few decades. People were saying the same thing when the first Final Fantasy movie came in too, and motion capture before Tintin only worked properly for non human elements like Gollum, the apes in Planet-of-the and the Navi in Avatar.

The Milennials that is, my generation, have already seen so much creative destruction it should hurt; if we didnt revel in it. There was the CD destroying the tape, then being destroyed in turn by the mp3. Then the internet comes and completely screws over many established industries while they were looking the other way. Most imprtantly the age old book is also undergoing a significant phase of creative destruction the like of which hasnt been seen since Gutenberg. Creative destruction happens when something is replaced in a way that is completely impossible to compete against, the only possible outcome is for the old to gradually and stubbornly give way to the new.

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3 comments
    • Whacko said:

      Yeah, would have been much better in 3d me thinks 🙂

      • Chavie said:

        Yeah, I facepalmed when I heard it was going to EAP and not Majestic… 😦

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