The Science of Movies

Current Spotlight

  • "Forbidden Planet": Artifacts from the Krell

    A celebration of the technology behind "Forbidden Planet" which featured a screening and discussion.

    View images and video from the event.

  • Cinematography

    Revolutionary developments in digital technology continue to impact every aspect of filmmaking. Cinematography in the Digital Age explored how current skills and techniques of cinematographers have evolved from traditional methodologies used when working with celluloid film.

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  • Silicone Makeup System

    Balloon Lighting

    Rawdon Hayne and Robert W. Jeffs of Leelium Tubelites received a 2002 Technical Achievement Award for their contributions to the development of internally lit balloons for motion picture lighting. The helium-filled balloons were designed to be usable indoors or out, quick to set up, and can light a large area.

  • Alvah Miller with Aerohead

    Remote Camera Head

    The Aerohead motion control camera head and the J-Viz Pre-Visualization system, designed by Alvah Miller (pictured), Michael Sorensen and J. Walt Adamczyk, serves the needs of the live-action filmmaker and allows for sophisticated tiling and pre-visualization techniques.  (2005 Technical Achievement Award)

Acting in the Digital Age

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

In April 2010, Short Films and Feature Animation Branch governor Bill Kroyer led an evening focused on two Oscar-winning films – “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” (2008) and “Avatar” (2009) – to demonstrate how innovations in performance-capture technology, digital doubles, digital makeup, photorealism and image manipulation are affecting actors.


The Digital Dilemma 2

The Digital Dilemma, published in 2007, raised important concerns about the longevity of digital motion picture materials created by the major Hollywood studios, as well as other valuable digital data managed by large commercial, scientific and government organizations. The Digital Dilemma 2 focuses on the more acute challenges faced by independent filmmakers, documentarians and nonprofit audiovisual archives.


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