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CGI versus Ethics

Since Star Wars first came out the movies have been pioneering computer generated graphics. Episode IV, released in 1977, was the first movie to use 3D wire-frame graphics. In their most recent release, Rogue One, two deceased actors were added into the movie using computer generated technology. Both Carrie Fisher and Peter Cushing were added into the film. Soon, could we expect other popular movie series to do the same? While this technology brings incredible advancements for films, it also brings a touchy ethical ground that is uncharted. After an actor has passed away, who is to decide what types of rolls they will play, and what things they’ll say and do? One side of the debate is that the actor in question’s autonomy could threatened. Actors who are currently alive have the ability to turn down roles for any reason they want, and putting them in the films without their permission is somewhat unethical. However, on the other hand, this technology provides opportunities to let their character’s legacies live on. Both sides offer valid arguments, but for now we will just have to wait and see.



  1. Kevin Vincent wrote:

    That is a very interesting argument that you have posted. Both sides of the argument may be logical, although I tend to lean more towards the debate that argues that is is fine to place actors in film digitally even if they have passed away, because their legacy can live on.

    Thursday, March 2, 2017 at 10:23 am | Permalink
  2. Colleen Mullins wrote:

    I totally understand where you’re coming from with this, and I see the potential ethical issues, and the issues of breaching the uncanny valley as well as the CGI of Peter Cushing did look a little off in the movie.
    I’d also just like to add that the CGI for Carrie was done while she was still alive, so there really wasn’t much of an ethical issue there. However, when she passed, the issue of her role in Episode 9 came up (as she had finished filming on Episode 8) and there was talk of recreating her digitally, but that was decided against. So here’s to hoping for a proper sendoff for our dear princess in The Last Jedi.

    Thursday, March 2, 2017 at 9:33 pm | Permalink