300 FAVORITE MOVIES (in no particular order)
89. Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988)
Eddie Valiant: Seriously, what do you see in that guy?
Jessica Rabbit: He makes me laugh.
Saturday Special: Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988, Robert Zemeckis) is well known for missing a question mark in its title. It’s better well known as a pioneer of several special effects techniques to make the cohabitation of live action and animation on film, which had been done before, more believable. Interactivity is still the buzzword used for making CGI effects believable. If you see a 2D or 3D animated character bump into something real and it actually falls over you can accept that world more readily. While the blend is ideally subconscious, it took a year of post-production to achieve. Motion control cameras (where a computer controls the camera movement) were used along with special rigs on set that moved props. Animators drew over black and white stills, and the animation was finished in the traditional way, but shot with no background. Finally ILM animated three layers of lighting, matching the live action lighting, before the cartoon characters were optically composited in. The pictures above are from the magazine The Animator, which goes into more depth here.
The film won the Oscar® for Best Visual Effects, Special Achievement in Animation Direction, Best Film Editing and Best Sound Effects Editing.
Never cease to be amazed by this film.