Questions about styles used through films and shows.

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105
votes
4answers
39k views

How do they film the mirror scenes in movies?

It always makes me wonder how do they place the cameras and crew members while filming a scene which is opposite to a reflecting object, such as mirror. Because, when filming the reflected objects we ...
65
votes
6answers
120k views

Why is the bride's name bleeped in Kill Bill Vol 1?

In the movie Kill Bill Vol.1, whenever someone mentions the bride by her name Beatrix Kiddo Her name is censored with a beep. Is this explained somewhere in the movie? Or is it just a signature ...
55
votes
6answers
2k views

Why all the fancy technology in most movies?

In most of the movies and TV-series I have watched, whenever there is some kind of "technology" involved (say, like a tracking device or hacking something important), there is a lot of unnecessary, ...
50
votes
1answer
28k views

What do actors actually inhale when they snort cocaine or smoke crack?

While film scenes where an actor injects something into his/her arm can perhaps be faked with edits and maybe prosthetics, how do actors manage to snort cocaine or smoke crack? Are there approved safe ...
43
votes
4answers
16k views

Kill Bill colour changes to Black and White

In the movie Kill Bill, why does the colour keep shifting from standard colour to black and white? Is it to keep the gross levels down?
42
votes
9answers
13k views

Is it really as easy to knock someone out in real life as in the movies?

As a child I watched (with my father) a boxing match which lasted 12 rounds. At the end neither fighter resembled his previous pretty self, but nobody got knocked out either. I just watched Terra ...
40
votes
5answers
8k views

How do they make tattoos in movies?

I've recently watched Point Break, and I was astonished by the number of tattoos worn by the principal characters, as well their thickness... How do they manage to do this? But in general, what ...
40
votes
6answers
30k views

What techniques are used by directors to make an actor cry?

I have always wondered what techniques directors use to get amateur actors, especially young ones, to cry. How can someone surrounded with so many film crew and cameras can concentrate enough and feel ...
39
votes
7answers
4k views

How can weightlessness be simulated on film?

How can the weightlessness of space be realistically simulated on film? Does it require CG or can a convincing simulation be achieved using wire fu and editing? (I'm happy to hear of good examples of ...
35
votes
3answers
4k views

What exactly is 70mm print and why does anyone care?

There has been a bit of controversy lately over the release of Tarantino's Hateful Eight movie. As I understand it, the movie was scheduled to play in a particular theater in Los Angeles that plays ...
34
votes
3answers
134k views

Do the actors really go nude in the shooting of the movies?

I often wonder if actors really go nude for certain scenes in films. I am not talking about those movies where we can see the sexual body-parts or genitals of the actors/actresses, but instead less ...
31
votes
2answers
815 views

Is there a rating of the 3D-ness of a 3D movie?

If things aren't thrown in my face during a 3D movie, I feel somewhat disappointed. I also appreciate the use of 3D to enhance a wide-angle shot, a humorous close-up, give a subtle sense of depth, and ...
29
votes
4answers
10k views

First use of on-screen text messages, like in Sherlock and House of Cards

The BBC's Sherlock (July 2010-) uses a novel visual trick to show the contents of an SMS message directly on the television screen, so we can all read it without having to look at a dull phone screen. ...
28
votes
3answers
6k views

How do they film minors smoking?

Many movies depict children and minors (and non smoking actors) actively smoking a cigarette and blowing actual smoke. How is that done?
26
votes
3answers
8k views

How did they create the hole in Robert Downey Jr.'s chest for the Iron Man movie?

Don't know if this is the right place to ask this, but I'm wondering how they created the hole in Robert Downey Jr.'s chest so they can put the reactor there? Here is the video "Iron Man: Behind the ...
25
votes
2answers
4k views

Does 1957's 12 Angry Men consist of only one cut?

Does 12 Angry Men consist of only one cut? Apart from maybe an opening scene and closing scene, when they are in the room, I don't see any cuts. If that is so, does it mean when some actor makes a ...
25
votes
8answers
15k views

What is the longest, single take, tracking shot in cinema/TV?

In episode four of True Detective, there was a 6-minute long, single take, tracking shot sequence. What is the longest, scripted, single take (no cuts) sequence in movies / television? I am not ...
25
votes
1answer
3k views

How did they film Danny tricycle riding through the hotel?

I am curious how the camera managed to maintain such a close distance to Danny riding his tricycle through the hotel in The Shining. The camera seems to be positioned on some wheeled cart that is ...
25
votes
2answers
8k views

How is dialog between two people filmed?

I was always wondering how dialog between two people is filmed. Suppose there are two people talking. The screen is switching between faces of the characters while they talk. How it is done in ...
24
votes
4answers
5k views

Why do professional green screens look so much better?

Why does the average green screen, such as one on the local news station, or some video on youtube, leave an outline and is obviously fake, but in some movies these effects look totally real. I was ...
24
votes
3answers
2k views

Do contemporary cinemas really project at 25fps?

In a conversation with a UK film professional, I was told that in order to simplify technical stuff associated with projection, all modern film are projected slightly sped up at 25fps - although they ...
24
votes
2answers
4k views

How do they prevent animal cruelty in movies?

According to a number of sources , cruelty to animals is an offence and it is punishable in most countries. But in historical film it's inevitable, because if a film is looking to be historically ...
23
votes
5answers
2k views

Why do films have more cuts than they did 20 years ago?

The "20 years" is an arbitrary figure but I have noticed that films tend to have way more cuts than they did in earlier days of film making. Sometimes there will be a conversation in the room and ...
22
votes
2answers
1k views

What was the earliest mass-release movie that used Matrix-like “bullet time”?

One of the things that The Matrix was famous for was "bullet time" cinematography. I'm fairly sure that, while it was the first one to use the technique extensively and become famous for it, it ...
21
votes
2answers
3k views

What is a “performance capture” animation movie?

The recent movie "The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn" is a performance capture animated movie. What is a "performance capture" movie and what is the need for this technology when the ...
21
votes
3answers
2k views

How are older movies post-converted to 3D?

I went to see Hugo in 3D today, and beforehand there was a trailer for the upcoming re-release of Titanic in 3D. I must say, I was impressed. How much of the conversion to 3D of a movie that was ...
21
votes
1answer
3k views

Do other actors/actresses really spit on each other in movies?

I've been seeing more and more of these scenes lately (though I know they aren't new), as they add shock value to a particular scene/story line. Just curious if it's split-scened or just a part of the ...
20
votes
2answers
161k views

Do they really have sex in movies?

Many times in movies (especially Hollywood), actors and actresses are shown having intercourse (not talking about pornographic films). Do they really do this? Or fake it? That's really up to the ...
20
votes
1answer
15k views

How do they make horses fall down in war movies?

I have seen horses falling down many times in war movies while running. How do they make horses fall down in war movies? Are they highly trained to know fall down at some place or some barriers are ...
19
votes
3answers
830 views

Why the long takes in Rope?

Alfred Hitchcock's 1948 film Rope is known for it's long takes. There is plenty of documentation regarding the length of each shot and the limitations of the technology available, but less so ...
19
votes
1answer
2k views

How can a movie from 1987 be better in HD than SD?

How can a movie from 1987 be better in HD than SD? Does that apply to all movies that were recorded on old-style film?
19
votes
2answers
1k views

Why is director's name shown last in the title sequence?

Why is the director's name shown last in Title Sequence/Opening Credits rather than first? I've seen this fact not only in Hollywood, but also in Bollywood, Kollywood etc.
19
votes
3answers
13k views

Is this mask really possible?

Sometimes we see a mask is used by an actor of a film by which he drastically changes his face. I was under the impression that only after plastic surgery one can change his face. I stumbled upon this ...
19
votes
2answers
2k views

How is 2D movie created from 3D?

There is a lot of 3D movies out there in these days, but they are also released in 2D (dvd, blu-ray, ...). I think, they are originally captured as 3D movies (with stereo camera). So each frame has 2 ...
19
votes
1answer
8k views

How was the bear attack scene shot in 'The Revenant'?

The picture below shows a scene with a bear attacking Leonardo DiCaprio, who is playing Hugh Glass in the movie ' The Revenant'. How was the scene shot? Was the bear real?
19
votes
1answer
545 views

Where did the “calmly eating noodles when bad guys walk in” scene first appear?

This scene happens in many martial arts movies: It usually starts with some hero wandering into a strange town; orders a bowl of noodles; then a couple of bad guys casually sit down and start ...
18
votes
3answers
26k views

Are real guns used in movies?

For example, in "Matrix Reloaded", we see that the agents fire on the car driven by Morpheus. We see that the bullets penetrating the body of the car. If the gun is not real, how did it happen? If ...
18
votes
3answers
9k views

How are underwater scenes in movies filmed?

In some movies, for instance the Jaws series, it's a wonderful feeling to see sharks underwater and have it feel very realistic. I'm curious to know how they film underwater scenes in movies. Not ...
18
votes
1answer
934 views

What is the first occurence of a sequence of short shots of the same length separated by fade ins/outs?

This technique is used in several movie trailers to give a feeling of stress, anxiety or urgency. It is also used in several movies (mostly thrillers, action or horror movies), sometimes even before ...
17
votes
1answer
2k views

How was the special high-contrast cinema release of Se7en created?

David Fincher's magnificent noir movie Seven (or Se7en) has very dark cinematography enhancing the moral darkness of the story. I remember that, after its initial success, the studio released a ...
17
votes
5answers
660 views

Why does the boom operator have to hold the boom mic by hand?

This woman is a boom operator. She holds a long stick with a big microphone on one end, to record sound on movie and television shoots. If you've ever tried to hold something over your head for a ...
17
votes
3answers
1k views

What's the purpose of people shouting “Hello” into the phone several times after they've clearly been disconnected?

This is usually done with a landline phone. The character calls someone or someone is calling him, they talk for a while and then for any reason the other person hangs up earlier than the character ...
16
votes
2answers
3k views

Horse jumping off the cliff scene from 'The Revenant'

In the movie The Revenant, when Di Caprio jumps off the cliff while on his horse, the scene looks very realistic. While in the "fight with the bear" scene I could definitely tell that it was done with ...
16
votes
3answers
3k views

How are head shots and deep throat gashes filmed?

I was watching a move the other night and the main character slits the throat of another person. The camera stayed on the victim the whole time this happened. I'm wondering how this is achieved. ...
16
votes
1answer
7k views

Why are twins often cast for young roles?

I've seen it many times. Very young identical twins cast for the same role. Off the top of my head: Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen in Full House. Dylan Thomas Sprouse and Cole Mitchell Sprouse in Big ...
15
votes
3answers
42k views

Do they really drink or eat when shooting movies?

Many times in movies and TV shows characters are showed as eating or drinking activities (water, beverages, alcohol). If a shoot takes many retakes, then the actors will not want to eat after going ...
15
votes
4answers
9k views

How do they make a huge crowd in a movie?

We usually see a huge crowd in a movie: In scenes in war movies having a huge crowd, where you'll have an army force with costumes In musical shows set in a movie, games like football, cricket, or ...
15
votes
1answer
2k views

What “colour template” do Harry Potter movies employ?

I don't know if "colour template" is the word for that. What I mean is the colour of the movies, especially Globet of Fire and the ones after it, seemed to be very dark but also with so much depth to ...
15
votes
2answers
7k views

What is the significance of “The Girl in Red” in Schindler's List?

"The Girl in Red" is a character talked about as much as the movie itself! However, I don't exactly understand the significance of the character itself and the usage of the color. Wikipedia ...
15
votes
1answer
305 views

Why the very different release formats for Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy?

Alright. The first time I saw the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (2005), it was... believe it or not... 4:3. I even obtained a copy of this. Later, I discovered that it was supposedly released in ...