Science Fiction Dictionary
A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z

 

Actors Reject, Makers Embrace, Posthumous Movie Resurrection

in the recent movie Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Peter Cushing is brought back from the dead to reprise his role as Grand Moff Tarkin. Cushing died in 1994.

Now, with the death of Carrie Fisher, actors are paying more attention to the use of versions of themselves in artificially generated post mortem performances.

Spoilers! The following video describes the recreation of characters in the film, but contains spoilers. Skip to 2:15.


(SPOILERS! Rogue One recreates dead actors)

Virtual characters have been used when an actor dies in the middle of a film production, as when Universal Pictures combined CGI and previous footage for Paul Walker's role in 2015's "Furious 7" after Walker's 2013 death in a car crash.

But "Rogue One" broke new ground by giving a significant supporting role to a dead star. A digital embodiment of British actor Peter Cushing, who died in 1994, reprised his role from the original 1997 "Star Wars" film as Tarkin.

Walt Disney Co recreated Tarkin with a mix of visual effects and a different actor.

A Disney spokeswoman declined to comment on whether Princess Leia would appear in films beyond "Episode VIII," set for release in 2017. Fisher had wrapped filming for the next "Star Wars" episode before she died. She suffered a heart attack on a flight from London to Los Angeles.

Fisher had been expected to play a key role in the ninth installment of the sci-fi saga, due for release in 2019.

Fisher's attorney, Frederick Bimbler, did not return requests for information on any stipulations the actress may have made about use of her image.

The rights of actors' heirs are rooted in a 1985 California law requiring filmmakers to obtain permission from a celebrity's estate to use his or her image after death. The law was enacted after a campaign by the son of Dracula actor Bela Lugosi, a lawyer who objected to widespread use of his late father's image.

With today's movie technology opening up so many possible scenarios, actors' union SAG-AFTRA is lobbying for all states to enact protections on the use of celebrity images after they die

My own impressions from having seen this technology is that it is a work in progress. I'm reminded of the "dinosaurs" from Jurassic Park. They're not really dinosaurs, they are really modern amphibians with some dino DNA added. The synthespians used in Rogue One are not Peter Cushing and Carrie Fisher; they are other actors with some of the "DNA" of the original actors. My two cents.

I should mention the synthesipian idea, which was used in William Gibson's Idoru. The word was coined by Jeff Kleiser. Kleiser and Diana Walczak created the first digital actor for their 1988 short film Nestor Sextone for President.

However, the first reference to the idea of a computer-generated person occurred in Robert Heinlein's 1966 novel The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. The computer created the person Adam Selene:

"...what's to keep me from showing face, Man? I'm showing a voice this instant... I can show a face the same way."

Was so taken aback I didn't answer... I said, "No, Mike."

"Why not, Man?"

"Because you can't!. Voice you handle beautifully. Involves only a few thousand decisions a second, a slow crawl to you. But to build up a video picture would require, say, ten million decisions every second. Mike, you're so fast I can't even think about it. But you aren't that fast."

Mike said softly, "Want to bet, Man?"

...We waited in silence. Then screen showed neutral gray with a hint of scan lines. Went black again, then a faint light filled middle and congealed into cloudy areas light and dark, ellipsoid. Not a face, but suggestion of face that one sees in cloud patterns...

It cleared a little and reminded me of pictures alleged to be ectoplasm. A ghost of a face.

Suddenly firmed and we saw "Adam Selene."

Was a still picture of a mature man. No background, just a face as if trimmed out of a print...

Then he smiled, moving lips and jaw and touching tongue to lips, a quick gesture...

Via Yahoo.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 12/21/2016)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )

Related News Stories - (" Entertainment ")

Flyboard Water Jet Shoes Lift Off
'I shall never forget that first lesson in aerial walking.' - Francis Flagg, 1930.

Cosplay Style Wings Could Work On Moon
'They're lovely! - titanalloy struts as light and strong as bird-bones...' - Robert Heinlein, 1957.

Music Not Impossible (MNI) Vibrotactile Wearable Experience
Don't you want to experience the 'feely' effects?

Augmented and-or Virtual Reality Shoes From Google
'The auto-treadmill's bumps and gullies matched whatever terrain the goggles showed me...' - David Brin, 1994.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

Science Fiction Timeline
1600-1899
1900-1939
1940's   1950's
1960's   1970's
1980's   1990's
2000's   2010's

Current News

LoadRunner Robot Works Alone, Or In A Group
'They marched in unison, seven of them...'

Sierra Space Inflatable LIFE Habitat Burst Pressure Test
'It was like being inside a balloon...'

Longest Immersed Tunnel Will Connect Denmark and Germany
'... iron tubes... the ends of the tubes were joined to each other...to preserve it from the action of the seawater.'

Alcohol-Sensing Cars - NTSB Catches Up With Philip K. Dick (1963)
'Mr. Garden, you are in no condition to drive....'

Solar-Powered Remote-Control Cockroaches!
'A cable, here, from the controller to the interface plug... wires from that to the brain.'

SolarBotanic Tree For Solar Energy - Would You Need A Forest, Or Just One?
'The slender stalks of a sunshade-photocell collector...'

Metaverse Hardware - Run And Flail Like A Maniac, Or Lie Quietly?
'Holodeck 4 was waiting to be programmed...'

Robot Food Delivery Coming To Campus Near You
'... he rewired the delivery robot so that it would serve him midnight snacks.'

Are Craiyon Images Puddinged, ala Philip K. Dick?
'I stood in line for half an hour for this, and it's just a blob!'

Hip'Safe Airbag For Seniors, From Helite
'Other airbags go off around her torso and pelvis...'

Soulaje Self-Administered Euthanasia Wearable Prototype
'A young man... advanced with nervous strides along the gravel path which leads to the bronze doors of the Lethal Chamber.'

Midjourney AI Creates 'Théâtre D'opéra Spatial', Wins Art Fair First Prize
'... we'll give him in his brain what he needs for creation.'

Mobot Robot Tests Smartphone Apps With Its Finger
'Rapidly, purposefully, the metallic fingers moved over the key-boards...'

Space-Based Solar Power A Priority - European Space Agency
'...vast man-made disk of metal set spinning about the sun to supply the Earth with power.'

Goldilocks Zones Found On The Moon
Hopefully, there are no Mynocks in shadowed lunar craters, chewing on the power cables of spacecraft...

Robotic Surgeons Outperform Human Surgeons
'...the objects moving about so gently and putting their instruments away were not living beings, but robots.'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.