6 Tiny Movie Moments That Took Insane Amounts Of Work

Movies are hard to induce. Director have to deal with a million different things, from a diva starlet’s demand that she only be illuminated by organic free-range illuminations, to trying to wrangle hundreds of thousands of extras in full medieval gear who are interested, more than anything else in this world, to pee. But it’s all worth it when that big action sequence dampens the seats of theaters across the globe, right? Well, what about the smaller stuff? The hours movies put insane work into little things that nobody ever noticed? Who will cry for them? Will you ?


Everything In Who Framed Roger Rabbit Was Laborious And Amazing

There is more great art hidden in Who Framed Roger Rabbit than an Argentine Nazi safehouse. Almost every frame incorporates hours of labor, all to attain the cartoons interact with the real world as believably as possible. Most of which goes completely unnoticed by the casual viewer. For instance, take a look at the scene in which Roger is dancing, get stuck with the skipping record player, and starts transgressing dishes over his head 😛 TAGEND

Did you ever wonder how they managed to get a cartoon to break real dishes over its head? No? You’re not some weirdo, you say? Well, they did it by building a dish-smashing machine that fit the beat of the song, and painting Roger over it 😛 TAGEND

Walt Disney Pictures Precisely as Asimov predicted.

Then there’s the cigar-smoking Baby Herman 😛 TAGEND

That’s a real cigar he’s “smoking.” There was yet another custom-made machine for this, fully articulated, which could perform six different gestures. It’s not clear exactly which gestures, but knowing Baby Herman, we have a pretty good idea.

Walt Disney Pictures We don’t know why it was necessary for the robot to be able to poop itself, but maybe that’s why we’re not in the movie business.

How about when Roger’s hiding from gun-toting cartoon villains in the sink?

The handguns were real, and needed puppeteers to operate every single one. Then, when Roger comes up for air and spits water, that’s real water. Of course it was pumped through a machine they built solely for that scene.

Walt Disney Pictures Sometimes you get to be Yoda, sometimes you get to do this.

This is all because of one subtle thing you may have overlooked: Roger may be a cartoon, but in his world, there are rules. If he swallows real water from the sink Eddie has his hands in, then it has to be real water that he spits out. If a cartoon puts a handgun in Eddie’s face and it really might kill him, it has to be a real handgun. They called it “bumping the lamp, ” after the scene in which Eddie saws through the handcuffs binding him to Roger, and this became the whole doctrine for the induce of the movie.

Look at the layers of run that went into that. By having Roger bump into everything, he feels like a real presence in the room, but that means everything has to be set up to fall over or shake when he does so — boxes, lamps, people. It all has to be timed perfectly. Having Roger bump the lamp was a particularly weighty decision, because the animators had to adjust Roger’s shadows accordingly. And it was all done so well that none of us even batted an eyelid.

But the real genius is the scene wherein Eddie and Roger arrive at Maroon Studios.

Walt Disney Pictures

While shooting this scene, Bob Hoskins made a rare slip. He accidentally looked at where a normal-sized person would be standing in front of him , not where the head of a vertically-challenged cartoon bunny “wouldve been”. Zemeckis didn’t notice at the time, so when the movie was handed over to the animators, they didn’t know what to do. After some head-scratching, director of animation Richard Williams ran it out: They had Roger stand on his tiptoes, bringing his head to a level with Eddie’s gaze.

Walt Disney Pictures This is the kind of stuff they don’t teach you in art school.

They knew that get the live-action actors to look at the exact place where the nonexistent character’s eyes would be was essential to suspending the viewers’ incredulity, even if they weren’t totally aware of it. That’s why the cartoon scenes in Mary Poppins feel so fake. It doesn’t look like those humans are actually interacting with those cartoon characters. But Who Framed Roger Rabbit nailed it time and time again, scene after scene. That’s one potential downside of being an animation genius: By doing their task so well, they stimulated it so none of us noticed what they did.