Synthespian Wannabe: Tron Legacy's Jeff Bridges
Jeff Bridges is the first actor to play opposite a younger synthespian version of himself, which he does in Tron: Legacy, the upcoming blockbuster from Disney. As those of us who saw the original recall, Bridges played video-game mogul Kevin Flynn. Thirty years later, he faces a digital version of himself in his thirties.
(Bridges (elder) vs. Bridges (digital younger))
New technology enabled film-makers to record the star’s facial movements in minute detail and then superimpose them onto a digital model of his younger self.
For Bridges, the development marks a new epoch in cinema.
‘Whenever I see a big, epic film where the character has aged from being a boy to an old man, traditionally there are different actors playing him and there’s always a little bump for me when they change from one actor to the next. But now I can play someone at any age. It’s the beginning of a new era of film-making.
‘This technology means I’d never have to work again in my life and I could still make films. I can say, “I’ll lease you my image.” In a few years they’ll be able to take aspects of three different actors and make a fourth character. It’s getting weird. They can say, “Let’s put Bridges in here, but I want a little Al Pacino in there – what the heck. Let’s see what kind of guy we come up with.” I think they’ll have this ability to go, “We’re going to give you lots of money; you just come in and do all your expressions, be real, sad, happy… and that’s it.”’
Is he joking?
‘No, this is where movies are starting to go now. They’re taking the actors and putting them in a computer, very much like Tron. It’s got to the stage where we’re close to not having to work at all.’
I'm sure that the irony of Jeff Bridges being scanned into the movie Tron: Legacy in a manner similar to his character Kevin Flynn being scanned into the video game Tron in the original movie Tron will not be lost on Technovelgy readers.
(Bridges (seated left) being scanned into the game in the original Tron)
Science fiction fans have been waiting for this development for many years. William Gibson brought the idea to the fore in his 1996 novel Idoru:
"What did Blackwell mean, last night, about Rez wanting to marry a Japanese girl who isn't real?"
"Idoru," Yamazaki said... "'Idol-singer.' She is Rei Toei. She is a personality-construct, a congeries of software agents, the creation of information-designers. She is akin to what I believe they call a 'synthespian,' in Hollywood."
(Read more about synthespians)
The first entirely digital actor was created by Jeff Kleiser and Diana Walczak for their 1988 short film Nestor Sextone for President. See a brief video of this historic creation here.
Theater audiences were treated to an advanced version of synthespians in Avatar (see my earlier article James Cameron's Avatar Synthespians).
Via an excellent article in the Daily Mail.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 11/30/2010)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 3 )
Related News Stories -
Deepfakes Imperil Democracy (George Orwell, Right Again)
'All history was a palimpsest, scraped clean and reinscribed exactly as often as was necessary.' - George Orwell, 1948.
Inspired By Japan, Nap Pods For Hajj
It's always a good time for a nap.
'Snapchat Dysmorphia' Now A Thing, Say Plastic Surgeons
'The program raced up the screen one scan line at a time, subtly smoothing, deleting and coloring.' - Bruce Sterling, 1985.
Bot Tweets Venmo Drug Transactions
An alarming item to find on your twitter feed.
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.
Jaguar I-Pace Audible Vehicle Alert System For EVs
'Of course not a vehicle moved by means of internal explosions of a derivative of rock oil...'
Autonomous 'Fiberbots' Weave Large Structures
'It extrudes material like a spider.'
Birds Aren't Real - Wake Up, California! (With Bird Watching Guide)
'When he had first built them, they had been crude indeed, flying mechanisms with little more than a reflex-response unit.'
Self-Healing Material Pulls Carbon Out Of The Air
'... could seal the punctures.'
IRL Glasses Block Screens, Limit Vision To Real Life
'If you couldn't see the ads, how would you know what was fashionable?'
Testing The Single-Person Spacecraft
'...the lower part of the suit was simply a rigid cylinder.'
Shapeshifting Materials Transform By Light
'Its lines wavered, flowed, and then painfully reformed.'
Fully Automated Farm Iron Ox Hydroponics
'Had these machines in some incredible fashion been provided with brains?'
BrainNet Social Network Of Brains
'I used my implant to tell MILLIE what we wanted and she took care of it'
Phil Nuyttnn's City Under The Sea
'Under the lower roof there was no water, but a clear and luminous atmosphere...'
IONITY Opens First 10 Fast-Charging Stations
'Recharge the batteries... in almost every town and village...'
Superstrong Multilayer Metal-Graphene Composite Material
Negligible increase in weight increased material strength by hundreds of times.
Deepfakes Imperil Democracy (George Orwell, Right Again)
'All history was a palimpsest, scraped clean and reinscribed exactly as often as was necessary.'
String Art Courtesy Of Robot Artist
The number of different ways to span a thread between a larger number of hooks is astronomical.
Still Wondering If You'd Work For A Robot Boss?
'This is all coming to you courtesy of the simstim unit wired into your deck, of course.'
World's First Autonomous Tram In Germany
What's it like for autonomous trams when they're turned off at night?
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories