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Computer Animation

             Computer animation has been around longer than I have. You may not realize it, but it was on the minds of film directors since the 1970's. Each director longed for an easier, more effective way to enhance the graphics of their film. Computers have been used in many films as an assistance for effects. The first movie where computers played a key role was the Young Sherlock Holmes 1 . However, during that time, no one ever thought of an animated movie created totally by computers. Nobody thought it could be done. Little did they know how fast technology was growing. Toy Story 2 was filmed totally on location - in cyberspace. .
             Computers Coming of Age .
             1970's .
             At the start of the 1970's, the idea of computer animation for use in movies was still a dream in the minds of most film directors. Although computer animation began in television. Television producers took existing images and changed their characteristics using a computer. They would stretch, squash and even spin the images to get a different effect.
             A SIGGRAPH conference was held, and this is where animators and software designers would show off their cutting edge ideas and programs. The "big thing" presented at the show was a computer-modeled version of simple objects, such as a virtual teapot and a modeled VW Beetle. During this time, a showing of a computer animated short film didn't win over many people watching. The only person who didn't hate it completely was George Lucas. In fact, he invited the team to create a sequence that showed 5 X-Wing fighters flying in formation. Once they created what they thought an exciting and worthwhile sequence, Lucas didn't approve it to be shown in his film. He didn't totally give up on CG 1. In fact he decided to assemble his own CG department, a group of experts who would eventually make up ILM2. .
             Systems Simulation Ltd. of London was commissioned to provide CG for a landing sequence in Alien3, arguably the first example of pure computer animation in a movie.

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