The Color of Special Effects & ‘Aliens’

Sulaco in 'Aliens'
Sulaco in ‘Aliens’

The majority of filmgoers are familiar with the use of blue- or green screens in filming effect shots in big budget films such as Star Wars or the Matrix. But with the advent of digital compositing in post production, a wide variety of colored screens can be used depending on the color of the foreground objects that are shot in front of it. So there are blue screens, green screens, black screens and even red screens in some cases.

The most famous of these is the blue screen. Here we will explore the process involved in replacing those “blue” with an image.

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‘Aliens’ echoes the original and set the standard for movie sequels

Carrie Henn gets saved by Sigourney Weaver in 'Aliens'
Carrie Henn gets saved by Sigourney Weaver in ‘Aliens’

[rating=3]Starring: Sigourney Weaver, Carrie Henn, Michael Biehn, Lance Henriksen, Paul Reiser, Bill Paxton
Director(s): James Cameron
Writer(s): Story by David Giler & Walter Hill and James Cameron, Screenplay by James Cameron

If Alien was considered a classic of horror, James Cameron’s Aliens was pure action and adventure. Although it still held elements of horror, Aliens offered up a action heavy film which — I believe — perfectly complimented the original and successfully expanded the story.

Read more‘Aliens’ echoes the original and set the standard for movie sequels

With ‘Alien’ Ridley Scott turned horror and science fiction on its head

Ian Holm, Sigourney Weaver, Tom Skerritt and John Hurt encounter an unstoppable creature in 'Alien'
Ian Holm, Sigourney Weaver, Tom Skerritt and John Hurt encounter an unstoppable creature in ‘Alien’

[rating=3]Starring: Tom Skerritt, Sigourney Weaver, Veronica Cartwright, Harry Dean Stanton, John Hurt, Ian Holm, Yaphet Kotto
Director(s): Ridley Scott
Writer(s): Story by Dan O’Bannon and Ronald Shusett, Screenplay by Dan O’Bannon

I first saw Alien when I was a young child. It was on television late one night. I don’t recall being particularly scared, but I did enjoy the film. It was exciting, with cool special effects — for the time — and a great creature.

Read moreWith ‘Alien’ Ridley Scott turned horror and science fiction on its head