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Special effects in movies are astonishing, leaving us sometimes baffled as to when CGI begins and ends.  In a homage to the movie industry we’ve put together an infographic into how your favourite films come to life with the evolution of special effects. Enjoy.

evolution of cgi


  1. The scene’s in Black Beauty wern’t special effects…. I should know… I was in it!

    Bitterly disappointing to see yet again that movies of an equestrian nature have been overlooked and I call, neigh I BEG upon ebuyer to stop this tyrannical embargo on horse related material.

    Why have the ground-breaking special effects that so realistically depict a horse in Tangled!? What about the 4th gen episodes of MLP!? WILL SOMEONE PLEASE ACKNOWLEDGE WAR PONY. THIS IS ANTI-SEMITISM AGAINST SPEILBERG SURELY!?!?!

  2. There are horses (Real ones, fair enough) in The Great Train Robbery.
    There is a horse (animated) in Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs.
    There is a horse (CGI) in Toy Story (2).
    There are thousands of the bloody things (Real, but mostly CGI) in The Lord Of The Rings Trilogy.
    Big Horsey Smiles all round.

  3. Surprised Terminator 2 was not on the list. This was one of the first films where computer generated graphics blended almost seamlessly with real characters.

  4. Hi there Will,

    Thank you for the Infograph, but I have poor eyesight and can not read the text on the graphic. When you put these up, could you not link it to a large version for people with disabilities, who also would like to be able to read this kind of information. We don’t all have 20/20 vision.

    Kind regards

  5. I am always amused by the meaninglessness of the ebuyer’s blog. I hope it does not cost them too much and keep their prices at lowest 🙂

  6. Not really what an infographic is for.

    In concept, what we have here is an article that requires images.
    In Reality, we have an image which requires an article.

    Too much image, too little information. The text should be the focal point. I should not have to zoom or lean closer to my screen to read the main content in an article.

    Did you just get a copy of Adobe Illustrator and get sidetracked on aesthetics?

  7. I would say they missed King Kong. Linwood Dune was an innovator and did all the composite work..

    “Dunn rose from shooting title cards to creating in-camera optical effects. He was hired as a special effects technician at RKO Radio Pictures, his tenure there lasting from 1929 to 1958. This early experience led to the World War II development of the first practical commercially manufactured optical printer, a device consisting of cameras and projectors allowing for the accurate compositing of multiple images onto a single piece of film.”

  8. As a practitioner in the field of physical special effects, this list is woefully short and doesn’t even scratch the surface.
    Today, to get the best special effects, no matter what the CGI advocates may preach, it still needs to be a blend of physical and visual SFX, personally I feel that the move towards digital has led to a degradation of quality and lack of field depth within the image,

  9. They can’t include every film with effects, how long would the article be? besides King Kong was real (a David Attenborough doc obviously), I’m not sure about Tron….


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