Extraordinary things happen on movie sets every day. Directors often want extra footage about their movies to use for promotional purposes. They may want to showcase their actors with interviews. Sometimes they simply want to record the creative process throughout to cover funny moments, unexpected cast interactions or to capture all the action and problems along the way.
Movie fans have a different perspective. It’s within the behind the scenes footage that we get to see the actors we love doing things we normally wouldn’t see. It’s also one way to make the initial movie experience last a little longer. When the movies are blockbusters, we may see them many times….but, oh how rewarding it is to see even more!
Here are five superb videos about some of the best films ever made:
Lord of the Rings
Cameras in Middle Earth is a fabulous behind the scenes look at everything that affected filming on location for various parts of the Lord of the Rings. Director Peter Jackson welcomes the viewers into all sorts of visual trivia, improvisation, dancing and singing, and the major character actors tell their stories as well. Producers, cast and crew discuss the joys and difficulties associated with filming in New Zealand during all sorts of bad weather over a very, very long time. Sir Edmund Hillary, the first man to summit Mt. Everest, visited the set one day, and that portion is a treasure to watch. So are all the jokes and pranks.
The Making of Jurassic Park takes viewers right into the magic that filled this movie. Director Steven Spielberg describes his thoughts about honoring the existence of dinosaurs. Hosted by James Earl Jones, this video has it all. The secrets of how Spielberg and his special effects team did it are revealed. It took Spielberg three years to create new technology and bring existing technologies into a completely new age of movie making. The main goal was to bring the dinosaurs back to life so that they were a reality. It was a daunting task, and the world wanted to see dinosaurs come alive. This video shows how it was accomplished.
Back to the Future
The Secrets of the Trilogy features Kirk Cameron as host of this video encompassing all the Back to the Future films. All sorts of old fashioned film tricks, high tech and low tech special effects, and tons of brand new technologies were used to create the movie. Industrial cranes, creative camera rigs, combinations of physical effects and optical effects are all shown. Director Robert Zemeckis used every effect “known to man” to create some segments. Michael J. Fox adds his own interview segments explaining what he thought about it all. It’s a mind-boggling reveal to satisfy the most extreme tech fans.
A World Unseen is a documentary created by 20th Century Fox to explore the unique connections between the writer, the film makers and the actors in the film. It is a heady, gripping and introspective film about the critically acclaimed movie starring Leonard DiCaprio. Anyone who has seen the movie will appreciate hearing Director Alejandro Inarritu describing his most intimate thoughts about the creative inspirations, artistic values and personal insights he has about the movie.
These Behind the Scenes Featurettes offer shorter, intriguing clips from the movie and the filming process with commentary provided by Alejandro and the cast members.
When Stanley Kubrick’s film The Shining was first aired in 1980, people who saw it were appropriately horrified. It’s what the movie was supposed to do. This video provides rare footage of Jack Nicholson practicing his lines between takes, Stanley Kubrick typing on a manual typewriter and exploring unconventional camera angles, Shelley Duvall learning how to apply her make-up, and Nicholson taking his terrifying character to extremes. This classic movie hasn’t lost its scare factor. Seeing the key members of the production describing all sorts of intimate details of the creative process for this nail-biter is a bit eerie all on its own. Re-visiting the sets and hearing the stress-inducing soundtrack once more is pretty spectacular.
Here’s a sixth riveting option:
There’s nothing planned about these revealing scenes captured on the Titanic set. These are short clips, with bits of fascinating information about the process of film-making. They’re perfect for huge Titanic fans, though their short lengths may make some viewers wishing for more. They document the enormity of filming this epic story.
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