Bande à part
Even if you don’t speak French, this video of Jean-Luc Godard’s 1964 heist film Bande à part shows the filming of its most celebrated moment: the Madison dance. The routine performed by Arthur (Claude Brasseur), Odile (Anna Karina), and Franz (Sami Frey) in a cafe influenced Quentin Tarantino and his creation of the dance that Uma Thurman and John Travolta share in Pulp Fiction. Watch the video over here.
Back to the Future Part II
One of the most memorable scenes in Robert Zemeckis’ Back to the Future sequel — set in 2015 — was the hoverboard chase sequence. The floating skateboard effects were accomplished with a variety of techniques that included cable suspension, wooden props attached to the actors’ feet, and more. This behind-the-scenes clip shows Zemeckis guiding the actors through the action scene. During a promotional push for the film, the director slyly told people that the hoverboards floated due to “magnetic energy,” and that parent groups prevented them from behind sold due to the risk involved. We haven’t lost hope that they might show up in 2015, regardless.
Although it’s perhaps too early to call James Cameron’s Avatar an iconic movie, the 2009 film is a new epic for the ages — featuring groundbreaking special effects and having dominated the box office as the highest-grossing film of all time. The enviro-sci-fi film’s extensive use of motion capture — the digital recording of an actor’s every movement and expression — is featured prominently in this B-roll footage. We get to see a lot of green screen, but also several action sequences at play. The video proves that teamwork was essential in crafting Avatar’s stunning special effects. It also reinforces that the actors faced a unique set of challenges during their scenes and how elaborate the post-production work really was.