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Amazing Hollywood movie sets you never knew were miniature sized until now!
Ever thought how famous Hollywood movie directors bring different worlds to life? It takes a lot of sweat, money and hard work from architects, carpenters and artists who are engaged for building miniature scale models for movies. But unfortunately these people are hardly remembered for their talent and it is only the director who gets all the applauses.

Despite of the fact that Computer Generated Imagery (CGI) has replaced miniatures to quite an extent in contemporary cinema, in many cases miniature movie sets are relied upon as stand alone or in combination with CGI technology to provide an element of truth to the movie sets and make them look convincing to the audience.

 

                                                                    (Scale model of Hogwarts from the movie Harry Potter)

Scale models are created to build scenes which otherwise would be expensive to create or simply don't exist in the real world. Miniatures introduce realism in the scene which CGI alone cannot provide even today, in spite of the advancement in technology.


(Golden Eye, 1995)

Scale models are used in combination with high speed photography or matte shots to create special effects which look convincing to the viewer. The earliest use of miniatures appears in the 1902 French movie Le Voyage dans la Lune (A Trip to the Moon) directed by George Melies.

Though miniatures never lost their importance in international cinema, the resurgence of science fiction genre in Hollywood in the late 1970s saw the construction quality of miniatures reach new heights. Miniatures were used extensively in movies like Star Wars (1977), Superman (1978), Alien (1979), Blade Runner (1982), The Terminator (1984) and Back to the Future (1985).

The year 1993 was a turning point which saw the release of Steven Spielberg's Jurassic Park which replaced miniatures with computer generated visual effects. CGI now dominates over the use of miniatures, but the use of scale models does arise in scenes requiring physical interaction with fire, water or explosions. Scale models prove cost effective in comparison to blowing up real-sized objects, vehicles or props.


(Minas Tirith, made for Lord of the Rings: Return of the King)

Movies even today depend on miniature scale models. Some recent examples can been seen in movies like Independence Day (1996), Titanic (1997), The Lord of the Rings trilogy (2001-3), Superman Returns (2006), Inception (2010) and Interstellar (2014)

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