Imagine the year is 1975, and movie effects looked terrible and unrealistic. Then one day, someone comes up with this wacky idea to make the impossible. That is exactly what happened with George Lucas and Star Wars. George Lucas wrote the script for Star Wars and showed it to his friends. Everybody he showed it to responded by saying it couldn’t be done.
That is when George Lucas came to John Dykstra. John Dykstra was working on the movie Close Encounters of a Third Kind at the time. John formed together a team of young artists and college students studying technology. They immediately got to work on Star Wars. Some of the scenes involved special effects where they painted on a glass board and screened in a different picture.
Star Wars came out in 1977 and was the biggest cinematic picture in movie making history. One of its nicknames was The Special Effects Miracle. With the money from Star Wars, George Lucas relocated to a place his company built called Skywalker Ranch.
After Star Wars, ILM opened its doors to the outside world. Steven Spielberg’s Raiders of the Lost Ark was done by ILM. Most of the effects didn’t come till the end when they had to melt, implode, and explode heads. When Raiders of the Lost Ark came out, it was an instant hit.
As time went on, ILM made more and more movies. As technology advanced, ILM created the idea of Computer Graphics (CG). CG brought special effects into a new universe. With the creation of CG, ILM had the ability to make another instant hit. A movie that brought the audience into a world of dinosaurs. A world of Jurassic Park. Creating the effects done in Jurassic Park was almost impossible. They had to create skeletons for the first test. Then they had to create layers of skin and color. They also had to create a background with the dinosaurs running around and eating each other.
After Jurassic Park, ILM was able to do anything. However, as time progressed into the world of computers, the original modeling world was getting upset. People still preferred old models made from hand and refused to move into the modern world of computers.
Over time, people started to move into the world of computers and CG progressed. More famous movies were made, such as The Abyss, Harry Potter, and more. After CG was good enough, George Lucas came back to ILM as an employee, wanting to make three prequels for Star Wars. It was extremely hard, considering what he suggested. However, ILM had proved what they could do with special effects in 20 years, and could definitely do this.
When Star Wars: The Phantom Menace came out, it was amazing. Everybody was so excited to see the second one. Star Wars: Attack of the Clones and Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith were big accomplishments in the special effects world.
ILM has done exactly what in 1975, people thought was impossible. All of their movies have looked amazing to the world. They are not done making special effects yet.