Last Starfighter (1984)

Last Starfighter (1984)


First integrated CGI backgrounds

Last Starfighter
Original Poster

Video (HD 1080p)

CGI making of video


1) CGI used for all spaceship shots, replacing traditional models.

2) First use of "integrated CGI" where the effects are supposed to represent real world objects (asteroids on background window of starship)

3) One of the  first film to feature the extensive use of CGI - most importantly, the integrated use of photo-realistic, computer-generated (CGI) models for all Gunstar vehicles or spaceships, for planet shots, and for high-tech hardware, rather than more traditional miniature models (as in 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) or Star Wars (1977).

4) Digital-graphic pioneers John Whitney, Jr., and Gary Demos, who contributed to the CG work in the film (and for TRON (1982), received the Scientific and Technical Academy Award in 1984 for the practical simulation of motion-picture photography by means of computer-generated images.

5) Directed by Nick Castle, this was a great step forward compared with other films of the day, such as Return of the Jedi, which still used conventional physical models. The computer graphics for the film were designed by artist Ron Cobb, and rendered by Digital Productions on a Cray X-MP supercomputer. A total of 27 minutes of finished CGI footage was produced,. considered an enormous quantity at the time. The company estimated that using computer animation required only half the time, and one half to one third the cost of traditional special effects.

6) For the 300 scenes containing computer graphics in the film, each frame of the animation contained an average of 250,000 polygons, and had a resolution of 3000 -5000 36-bit pixels.