Jon Favreau Shares How "Digital Production" Has Changed Since The "Star Wars" Prequels

These days, most films are done with some form or “digital production” yet there is a stigma attached to the term when it comes to “Star Wars.” With that in mind, ‘The Mandalorian‘ showrunner Jon Favreau has really delved into why he decided to use digital effects instead of shooting on locations for his upcoming Disney+ series. Of course, for the scale of the sets and show, it does make sense that he wanted to go this route.

According to Favreau, it was George Lucas who started it all:

“Well, I would argue that the prequels are — and [George] Lucas in general is — the bedrock that all of this is built on. He is the first person that had digital photography, he was the first person to do completely CG characters. The whole notion of not having even a print [version of the film], of having everything be 0’s and 1’s, was all George. Not to mention EditDroid, which turned into Avid, Pixar was spawned out of their laboratories at LucasFilm, so he is arguably the center of the Big Bang for everything that I’m doing. It’s building on the shoulders of what he was able to innovate.”

As to how things have changed? Technology has come a long way. Every year we see improvements in most areas of everything from phones to special effects in movies. As so much time has passed:

“This is 20 years later, and also there’s been a democratization of the skill set too. It’s no longer a few vendors innovating in ivory towers, that information has been expanded and disseminated and democratized so that effects that would cost you millions of dollars, you can do it on a PC now, with consumer-facing filmmaking tools. When George came to our set and visited The Mandalorian, he said, “Oh, we did this,” and what he meant was, “We had green screen, and we were building small sets and expanding upon it.” Now, we have video walls, NVIDIA video cards that allow a refresh rate that allows you to do in-camera effects, we’re in there taking advantage of the cutting-edge stuff.”


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Of course, he knows that digitally creating movies isn’t the only way to go do things either:

“Every film is a puzzle, and there’s a freedom that you have as a storyteller if you go to the real environment; it affects you and the human element. When you see Lawrence of Arabia, how much of that is informed by really being there and not shooting it in Calabasas — I think you get a different movie. The way I work and the stories I’m telling are geared specifically toward what this technology has to offer, so I could not make Episode IX using these tools.”

With the style of story in mind, it makes even more sense to go this route.

Are you looking forward to checking out ‘The Mandalorian’? Do you feel that “digital production” has evolved enough since the prequel trilogy for a full series to be shot in it seamlessly? Share your thoughts in the comments below!


Source: The Hollywood Reporter