A Rare Glimpse at the Matte Paintings From the Original 'Star Wars' Trilogy

The real force behind the franchise’s success.

Design
6,753 Hypes 0 Comments

When the original Star Wars trilogy released back in 1977 (Star Wars), 1980 (The Empire Strikes Back) and 1983 (Return of the Jedi) respectively, a handful of artists at Industrial Light and Magic (ILM) hand-painted numerous scenes and sets. While we take CGI for granted nowadays, back then matte paintings along with models were used to create many of the iconic settings in the three movies. The matte paintings were created by Chris Evans, Mike Pangrazio, Frank Ordaz, Harrison Ellenshaw and Ralph McQuarrie which you can browse in the gallery above.

Frank Ordaz wrote the following to Gizmodo in regards to his work for Return of the Jedi:

Matte paintings are fake sets that—most of the times—used to be made with plexiglass and oil paint. The artists used oversized panels to create the necessary detail that the camera needed to fool the audiences when the film was projected over the large surface of the theater screen. The paintings were combined with live action filmed to match the perspective of the painting. If done well, the public would totally buy into the shot.

Let us know if you like the realistic matte paintings of the past or modern day CGI better.

Read Full Article

What to Read Next

Original 'Star Wars' Editor Marcia Lucas Slashes Disney Sequel Trilogy: 'The Storylines Are Terrible'
Entertainment

Original 'Star Wars' Editor Marcia Lucas Slashes Disney Sequel Trilogy: 'The Storylines Are Terrible'

“Kathy Kennedy and J.J. Abrams don’t have a clue about ‘Star Wars.’”

LEGO Star Wars Ultimate Collector Series Unveils Massive 6,785-Piece AT-AT Model
Design

LEGO Star Wars Ultimate Collector Series Unveils Massive 6,785-Piece AT-AT Model

Modeled after the vehicle seen during the Battle of Hoth in ‘Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back.’

A Two-Night Stay at Disney's Star Wars Hotel Will Cost $6,000 USD
Travel

A Two-Night Stay at Disney's Star Wars Hotel Will Cost $6,000 USD

And that’s one of the cheapest options.


Disney Announces 'Star Wars: The Bad Batch' Season Two
Entertainment

Disney Announces 'Star Wars: The Bad Batch' Season Two

With a 2022 arrival.

The Best Street Style on Instagram This Week Is a Strong Mix of Essentials
Fashion 

The Best Street Style on Instagram This Week Is a Strong Mix of Essentials

Neutral monochromes, classic prints and summer whites.

Supreme's Louis Vuitton-Inspired Skate Decks Resell for $10K USD on eBay
Fashion

Supreme's Louis Vuitton-Inspired Skate Decks Resell for $10K USD on eBay

The original collection piques interest from fans.

adidas Consortium Taps END. and Bodega for Latest Sneaker Exchange
Footwear

adidas Consortium Taps END. and Bodega for Latest Sneaker Exchange

Turning out a “Boro Denim” pack featuring the Haven and Iniki Runner.

New Study Reveals That Compression Tights Don't Improve Running Performance
Tech

New Study Reveals That Compression Tights Don't Improve Running Performance

The Nike-funded study puts the muscle vibration theory to test.

The Pharrell x adidas Originals Tennis Hu Gets New Multicolor Remixes for Summer
Footwear

The Pharrell x adidas Originals Tennis Hu Gets New Multicolor Remixes for Summer

Marled weave Primeknits and marbled midsoles.


nonnative Gets Colorful in New 2017 Spring/Summer Editorial by 'intelligence'
Fashion

nonnative Gets Colorful in New 2017 Spring/Summer Editorial by 'intelligence'

Monochromatic outfits are in this season.

BUSCEMI and The Selby Drop a 100mm Sneaker That Costs $1,200 USD
Footwear

BUSCEMI and The Selby Drop a 100mm Sneaker That Costs $1,200 USD

Gold foil and gold-plated hardware.

Pusha T Writes Open Letter to Lil J After His Viral Video
Music

Pusha T Writes Open Letter to Lil J After His Viral Video

He also helped J start a college fund.

The Final Season of 'Game of Thrones' Might Air in 2019
Entertainment

The Final Season of 'Game of Thrones' Might Air in 2019

Is it worth the wait?

Nike Unveils Two New Sock Dart Colorways for the Next N7 Collection
Footwear

Nike Unveils Two New Sock Dart Colorways for the Next N7 Collection

One bold, one subtle, both for a good cause.

More ▾
 
Subscribe to our Newsletter

Gain access to exclusive interviews with industry creatives, think pieces, trend forecasts, guides and more.

By subscribing, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Adblock Detected.

We charge advertisers instead of our readers. If you enjoy our content, please add us to your adblocker's whitelist. We'd really appreciated it.