ByKarly Rayner, writer at
Movie Pilot's celebrity savant
Karly Rayner

For all the bad press it gets from movie buffs, CGI done well can be almost impossible to notice. The exceptional CGI in the clips below blends so seamlessly with reality that a lot of you might not have spotted it all, but which one will impress you the most?

1. A Beautiful Mind Baby in the Bathtub

It is obviously incredibly dangerous and totally unethical to submerge a baby in water, so the Beautiful Mind team had to find another way to render this hard-hitting scene.

The water in the clip above is all CGI which is incredibly impressive seeing as the movie is over a decade old and the effect is so convincing.

2. Zodiac City Scapes

It might be a hard fact to swallow, but David Fincher's Zodiac was not actually filmed in San Fransisco, despite the epic cityscapes that feature prominently in the movie.

This incredible CGI witchcraft is revealed in all of its incredibly glory in the behind the scenes video you can see above.

3. Robert Downey Jr. in the final scene of Iron Man 3

During the filming of Iron Man 3, Robert Downey Jr. injured his ankle, but to avoid delays in release, the show went on without him and a CGI stand in was constructed to replace the actor.

Chris Townsend, the VFX supervisor explained:

"We were able to reconstruct RDJ as Tony Stark on set with the help of a body double and the facial captures we collected afterwards."

For example, the whole beach scene at the very end of the movie was shot using a body double and then following production, the SFX team took the raw footage and digitally merged RDJ's face onto the body.

4. Gatsby's Mansion in The Great Gatsby

The Great Gatsby might be a classy period drama, but it's crammed full of more CGI than your average Michael Bay movie.

Gatsby's entire mansion was created using only computer magic as opposed to bricks and mortar as these exterior shots that let us peek behind the magician's curtain show.

5. Police Walkie Talkies in E.T.

In the original release of E.T., the FBI agents are seen waving their walkie talkies around in a weirdly menacing fashion, but these communication devices were actually added in post production.

The scene was shot using guns (as you can see in the video below), but Spielberg decided to remove them to avoid controversy and pressure from parental groups. The legendary director had a change of heart though, and the original footage with guns is used in the 20th anniversary Blu-Ray of the '80s classic.

6. The Entire Nude Sex Scene in Fight Club

I hate to break it to anyone who hasn't twigged on yet, but the riotous sex scene between Brad Pitt and Helena Bonham Carter in Fight Club was nothing but some pixels bumping rude bits. Soz.

You can see all of the technical artistry that went into Brad's screaming O face and sweat droplets in the video above.

7. Forrest Gump Ping Pong

If you've ever wondered how Tom Hanks got so good at ping pong for Forrest Gump, the simple answer is he didn't.

While Tom Hanks is apparently pretty good at ping pong, he is in no way a professional grade player so the ball was added with CGI later on. Watching the actors perform the ping pong ballet to claps from a metronome is not much less impressive though!

Apologies for the Spanish subtitles on the video below (unless they are helpful for you, then you're welcome!), I couldn't find the making of without them.

8. The Rat in The Departed

The Departed is well known for it's iconic final scene, but the furry friend we see scuttling across the balcony when the curtains fall is entirely computer generated.

Who knows why they couldn't just lure a rat across a balcony with a nugget of cheese, but I guess us mere mortals will never understand the inner workings of Hollywood productions!

9. Jessica Alba Strips Down for Machete

Although it might very much look like Jessica Alba bared all for Machete, you have all been salivating over some saucy computer trickery!

The famously prim actress instead shot the scene in underwear which was then painstakingly edited out later. Why everyone genuinely thinking you are naked is less scandalous than actually being naked beats me... I know I'd rather take it all off in front of a camera crew than have a tech team scrutinizing every minute pore of my skin for days on end, but each to their own!

(Source: What Culture, Cracked, Yahoo)


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