Lucasfilm, which should need no introduction (hint, think "Star Wars"), said on Wednesday (via The Verge) that movie post-production work could be dramatically reduced by video game technology. It's an interesting statement from Lucas: In June, George Lucas and Steven Spielberg forecast an implosion coming in the movie industry, and blamed technology for at least part of it.
Lucasfilm Chief technology strategy officer Kim Libreri said that eventually computer graphics will evolve to the point that video game assets can be inserted into scenes in real-time.
Everyone has seen what we can do in movies, and I think most people will agree the video game industry is catching up quite quickly, especially in the next generation of console title.
I'm pretty sure within the next decade, we're going to see a convergence in terms of traditional visual effects capabilities. We think that computer graphics are going to be so realistic in real time computer graphics that, over the next decade, we'll start to be able to take the post out of post-production; where you'll leave a movie set and the shot is pretty much complete.
Among the assets that Libreri mentioned were "realistic fire, creatures, and environments. They would, he said, all work "completely interactively."
In June, speaking during a panel discussion at the University of Southern California's School for Cinematic Arts, Spielberg said:
There is going to be a day when the experience is going to be the price of admission. What I fear about that day coming is that the experience will trump the story or the ability to compel people through a narrative. And it's going to be more of a ride, a theme park, than it is going to be a story, and that's what I hope doesn't happen. [...]
There's going to be an implosion where three or four or maybe even a half-dozen mega-budgeted movies go crashing into the ground, and that's going to change the paradigm again.
You're going to end up with fewer theaters, bigger theaters with a lot of nice things. Going to the movies will cost 50 bucks or 100 or 150 bucks -- like what Broadway costs today, or a football game.
If Lucas and Spielberg are right -- and there are those that feel that they already are -- you won't see films like the Academy Award-nominated movie "Lincoln" in theaters, but on TV -- Spielberg, in fact, said that "Lincoln" almost ended up on HBO.
Instead, the pair fears, you'll see these films at home. In addition, they said, you might not even see them on traditional cable or satellite, but on Internet TV.