Is it Alita Battle Angel, Caesar from Planet of the Apes, Thanos or someone else?
If you had to choose the most realistic CG character of all time, who would it be? We asked our Twitter followers the same question and there was an overwhelming response. Most of the replies were #TeamAlita.
Alita is the heroine of the popular manga comic series, Battle Angel Alita, created by Yukito Kishiro in the ’90s. Filmmakers James Cameron and Robert Rodriguez adapted the original comic and brought on actress Rosa Salazar to play the hyper-realistic CG character in the 2018 film, Alita: Battle Angel.
According to Alita’s VFX designers, they used performance capture to create photo-realistic shots. The crew placed cameras around the sets to record the actors’ movements and facial expressions. Using performance capture rather than motion capture allowed for the most photorealistic image possible.
Alita’s eyes, which appeared strangely oversized, carried her emotions in each scene. One Twitter user referenced this article in Vulture, to point out the large number of digital polygons used to create dimension in each iris. “Eyes are among the hardest visual effect to perfect. Best-case scenario, they look something like Caesar’s in the Planet of the Apes trilogy: vivid, emotional, alive. Worst-case, they look like The Polar Express: passive, doll-like, dead,” said Vulture writer Hunter Harris.
Alita was the clear winner in our Twitter debate. Rosa Salazar’s performance as Alita felt authentic because the cameras captured every emotion and expression seamlessly. However, there were strong runner-up CG contenders. Thanos and Caesar tied at a close second to Alita Battle Angel. Below is a list of CG characters you guys voted for. Do you agree?
Realistic CG Characters
- 1. Caesar from Planet of the Apes
- 2. Marvel’s supervillain Thanos
- 3. Gungan from Star Wars
- 4. Gollum from The Lored of the Rings
- 5. Nyx Ulric from Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV
Follow us on Twitter and tell us who you think deserves the title of “Most Realistic CG Character of All Time.”
Gifs From Our Twitter Debate
Gollum’s eyes used 50,000 digital polygons. Alita’s, by contrast, have 9 million polygons in just one iris — the rendering is exponentially more precise. VFX Supervisor Eric Saindon spoke with @vulture on #Alita. https://t.co/smqLdMi1Xf
— Weta Digital (@weta_digital)
— Huge Alita Fan (@Huge_Alita_Fan) September 30, 2019
— Helldemon02 (@helldemon02) September 30, 2019
— ShadowWithout ⚔🖤⚔ (@ShadowWithout1) September 29, 2019
— Kranberri Jam 🍺💜🍮 The Kraken Künstler (@kranberrijam) September 29, 2019
— Batman (@Batmancanseeyou) September 30, 2019
Not even a question pic.twitter.com/oWfyv4VXPQ
— Jacob (@JacobMcMillan3) September 30, 2019
— Louis (@LouisDIM) October 1, 2019