Well, for those of you who think the digital rendition of Grand Moff Tarkin (aka Peter Cushing) that appeared in ‘Rogue One: A Star Wars Story’ is the greatest thing since sliced bread, there’s a new featurette that just hit the internet that you might be interested in. The video, titled “Behind the Magic: The Visual Effects Of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” gives a visual breakdown of many of the more impressive VFX shots in ‘Rogue One,’ including a breakdown of Tarkin and how they managed to pull off the character in the film.
As many already know, there really was an actor on set portraying the villain, Guy Henry, and he is fully decked out with a special rig and effects suit designed to help the VFX artists recreate Cushing’s likeness right over Henry, thus creating the digital Tarkin of the film. And while that digital creation may not be perfect (far from perfect if you ask me, and many others), you have to admit it is leaps and bounds ahead of anything we have seen before in the realm of creating a full human being in the computer that can act alongside real actors, especially one that is based on the likeness of an existing actor. And while true that many people might be giving the Tarkin of ‘Rogue One’ some breaks since it was done as an homage to Peter Cushing and to give the character a chance to reappear in the ‘Star Wars’ universe even after the death of the actor who portrayed him, in its best moments it is a really good version of Cushing. In its worst, it dips a little far into the uncanny valley and is somewhat creepy looking, but you have to appreciate the risk the filmmakers took in crafting such a character.
Check out the effects reel for yourself below, and share your thoughts on what you thought of the digital Tarkin, and if you wish they had used him more or less in the film in the comments below!