Setting movies in ancient Rome is pretty commonplace in film history, but Gladiator re-defined the practice as a science (for multiple reasons). First, Ridley Scott's Oscar-winning epic recreated the famed Coliseum in grand fashion. Filmmakers took a small-scale version and, through the magic of the movies, made it into something that would easily rival what it must have looked like at the height of its glory.However, recreating the venue was only half of the movie's CGI accomplishments, as producers were thrown a curveball when actor Oliver Reed sadly passed away before filming wrapped. So the film had to find a way to "virtually revive" Reed for his final shots. Special effects group The Mill used computer graphics to put Reed's face over the body of the double being used for the late actor. It's only about two minutes of footage, and most if takes place at night and using partially obscured shots, but it was a key scene that was needed to close out the character's story. The cost? A cool $3.2 million.
Pixar has been a game changer from the beginning as they put equal emphasis on quality storytelling and quality animation. Toy Story was the first fully computer-generated full-length feature film ever. Each frame took hours to complete, which may have been intensive but it certainly paid off.The movie and its style set the mark for how future films of its kind should look and even feel which has earned the company numerous top awards not to mention the trust and respect of the movie going public which is no easy feat.They understand how not just to make movies but how to make audiences respond to those movies. If you can get through the first ten minutes of Up or the final sequence in Toy Story 3 without tearing up a little you may not actually be human.
Christopher Nolan is as visionary a director as there is in the industry today. He makes movies differently -- and often they involve stellar special visual effects. The one that really stands out, though, is Inception -- for which he was nominated for a Best Picture Oscar. The movie had sequence upon sequence that was absolutely stunning, and combined techniques in ways that had yet to be seen.Take, for example, the Paris street scene where the city looks to fold up behind Leonardo DiCaprio and Ellen Page. What audiences don't realize is that all the aspects that have to change with the sequence....how it folds, how the people and objects in the shot change based on the directional change, how the lighting should look, etc. Nolan's visual effects team (which won the Oscar that year) had all of those details down and then that had to match up with the audio and the actor's reactions and all sorts of factors that make our heads hurt just thinking about it. And that was just one of many scenes that involved that type of detail!That's the magic of a Christopher Nolan movie -- and it's something hard for others to duplicate.
"Whoa." As it turns out Keanu Reeves' character Neo wasn't the only one to get his mind blown seeing what could happen in "The Matrix." When the film debuted in 1999, audiences couldn't wrap their heads over what they were watching. Don't get us wrong, they loved it, but mostly they were still trying to figure out how these amazing concepts were being shown on screen.Nicknamed "bullet-time," the most well known special effect from the film was a simulation that was used to show objects in ultra-slow motion...in this case the objects were bullets. The technique used is a version of an old school photography technique known as "time-slice," where multiple camera are placed around an object and simultaneously set to shoot. Now when those shots are strung together what follows is a sequence in which audiences are seeing a 2D "slice" of a 3D moment caught on film. Again...whoa.
Avatar is without a doubt one of the most complex films every attempted...and it worked. The movie furthered the use of fully CGI-created environments and characters beyond anything that was out there (or would be for years to come).Remember, director James Cameron is a perfectionist (and we mean an absolute perfectionist) and he first looked to release the film in 1999, but no studio would give him the money for the massive budget. It's rumored that Cameron was inspired enough by Peter Jackson's work on the Gollum character in Lord of the Rings to decide that the visual medium had gotten to a point where his Avatar world could be built to his strict standards.Eventually, he did find the massive budget for the project, and was given the green light to begin production. The movie took four years to make and became the first completely digitally shot movie to win an Oscar for Best Cinematography. The film's finale sequence alone was enough to show this was a movie that film majors will be studying for years to come!
One of these days, the Academy Awards are going to be forced to recognize the talents of actors who appear on-screen as a CGI character. Many have thrown Andy Serkis' name around as the first person likely to break that barrier -- and it's no mystery why!Serkis is the man who helped bring Gollum to life in the Lord of the Rings trilogy (as well as Caesar in Rise of the Planet of the Apes.) This was the first time an actor's performance was combined with digital animation to make this advanced of a CGI character live on the screen. Serkis was actually only supposed to voice Gollum, but when animators saw the way his face moved when recording dialogue, they knew they were onto something special.Wearing a motion-capture suit, Serkis would eventually appear on camera opposite the real-life actors, and then the Gollum character would be placed over him in post-production. Director Peter Jackson relied on Star Wars legend George Lucas and producer Rick McCallum to help hone in on these concepts, and really became a trailblazer for a new style of filmmaking as a result.
The movie brought dinosaurs to life on-screen...freaking dinosaurs. How is this not an accomplishment? Believe it or not though while "Jurassic Park" is thought of as CGI heavy movie, it's really not! Director Steven Spielberg built actual audio-animatronic dinosaur models because they brought a sense of depth and actual realism to this film. However there were some shots that CGI had to be used for and those were very much among the first of their kind.As many critics have pointed out...this was a movie about dinosaurs and if the grand reveal the first time you really see one wasn't spectacular the movie would be seen as a failure. As a result, Spielberg had to ensure those first moments when the extinct creatures made their debut were nothing short of magical and his conspired with the famed Industrial Light and Magic (ILM) group to pull of the illusion. It worked!
It's not that Tron was the best movie ever made, but it was one of the most creative. This was the first time computer-generated imagery had ever been used to such a massive extent in a movie. Visual effects group MAGI used a "SynthaVision" process to render the graphics, which basically means it made the computer see simple shapes as solid objects with density.This occurs mostly in scenes where the Lightcycles and Recognizers are used, which normally corresponded to scenes where live actors weren't the focus -- because at the time, the technology didn't exist for live-action figures and CGI animation to be used together. Instead, filmmakers needed to use hand-drawn animation with the live-action shots (mixed with editing) to create what you saw on screen.Here's the where things get even more fun though: Many Disney animators initially refused to work on Tron, as they felt computers would put them out of a job. A little more than two decades later, those fears came true and Disney closed their hand-drawn animation studio in favor of CGI. However in the irony of ironies, Pixar guru and industry visionary John Lasseter eventually ordered the facilities re-opened, as he saw the value in both type of releases.Another fun fact: Tron was disqualified from the 1982 Visual Effects Oscars, as voters felt the film's computer-aided effects were considered "cheating."
The rib eye is the ultimate steak-lover's steak. It's the most flavorful cut of the animal, and comes with very rich marbling, which provides superior taste when cooked. The cut itself comes from the rib section, where it gets its name. The bone from the rib is typically removed before sale, although some restaurants specifically sell "bone-in rib eye" preparations of the cut. Its abundance of marbling makes it a great cut for grilling and slow roasting.
The top sirloin cap is a rarer cut of meat to find as it's usually already sectioned out into steaks. The cut comes from the triangular-shaped muscle immediate above the top sirloin. It's a very versatile cut of meat, both lean and flavorful, with a variety of different preparation options like grilling, broiling, and pan searing available. The top sirloin cap works really well when marinated or seasoned with a dry rub.
The top sirloin is a cut from the loin that offers good flavor in a thick cut ideal for grilling, broiling, sautéeing or pan-frying. While the top sirloin doesn't have as much marbling as a rib eye or New York strip, it certainly has enough to provide good flavor for a steak. Preferred thickness for top sirloin cuts tends to be in the 1-inch to 2-inch range, with 2 inches being ideal. Thicker steaks don't run the risk of drying out as easily when cooked.
The tenderloin, referred to in other parts of the world as a filet, is a cut from the loin of beef. The tenderloin exists beneath the ribs and next to the backbone. The tenderloin is, as its name implies, the most tender cut of beef. Those who do not prefer the marbling of the rib eye and strip loin will thoroughly enjoy the tenderloin.
The strip loin, sometimes referred to as strip steak, New York strip, and internationally, a club steak, is a cut from the short loin. The short loin is a large muscle allowing for very thick cuts, and provides a great alternative for those who don't enjoy the significant internal fat content of the rib eye. When the strip loin is sold with a piece of the tenderloin included, it is referred to as a T-bone steak, or a porterhouse. The main difference between these two is that the porterhouse has a more sizable chunk of the tenderloin included.
In winter driving conditions your all-season tires are not guaranteed to keep you safe in heavier snow fall or icy conditions. Which is why it is imperative that if you live in a region that receives extremely inclement you are properly set up with a set of winter tires prior to the start of the season.
Forget watching your calories and fad diets, juicing is a simple, efficient and proven way of harnessing mother nature's best nutrients all in a single glass. Fruits and veggies contain sweet little miracle workers called phytonutrients, which when you juice fruits and especially vegetables, you extract in a concentrated form. These nutrients is responsible for giving you focus, regulating your system, reenforcing your immune system, and of course... giving you tremendous energy.Green makes you a machine!'Green' vegetables such as kale or broccoli have the highest concentrations of phytonutrients (including Vitamin C, carotenoids, lutein, folate, magnesium and Vitamin K) and when you juice these bad boys up, you're basically making yourself a glass of sunshine...and kale, and broccoli. So drink those nutrients up, and see what every one has been talking about while feeling absolutely great.
It's no secret that human beings need energy, and juicing gives us exactly that. By drinking the juice from fruits and vegetables rather than eating them, we're outsourcing our digestion, and spending much less energy digesting our food. Look at all the fruits and veggies it takes to make just one glass of juice, all these good things are going straight into your system and being efficiently transformed into energy.This also translates into weight loss. You're eating much less, but because you're getting all the energy and nutrients you need from the juice, you feel much more full. It's small portions, with big nutritional benefits, so start juicing.
Rebooting your system is a big one. Think about it, how often do you crave a cheeseburger rather than a salad? Because we eat so many processed foods, our brain starts needing it. The brain forgets what is good for it, and starts telling us we need some fries and pizza.By going on a vegetable and fruit only juice diet, we're rewiring our system to enjoy the things it should. The best part is that these juices taste great, and will make you want a salad more than you ever did. It's literally a system reboot.