CGI VS live-action: only one can take your guests in a fantastic adventure!
Today, in this article, we want to explain why, when deciding upon what to screen in a media-based attraction, a CGI content is better than a live-action movie. Let’s start by making a basic distinction between the two. Live-action movies use real actors, photography, and they are created using cameras. In these kinds of films, actors perform and are recorded. This means that no digital character is needed and the video is captured straight from the real world. On the other hand, CGI (Computer Generated Imagery) content can be anything drawn on a computer by using computer graphics, being an animated 3D model, the environment, and so on.  

Characters, environment, and 3D model from the custom-built movie, "Miko and the Spell of the Stone", we produced following Unlimited Snow's marmots IP.

  But why are we so sure that CGI content is better than live-action for a media-based attraction? There’s a reason if big companies such as Pixar Animation Studio and Dreamworks Animation are still using this technique for their animations in the film industry.  CGI content is a form of film-making and the best way to picture unreal things that can only be imagined. While live-action video simulates the real world better than animation can, CGI gives producers the power to do far more than is possible in real life, all with the power of drawing. Imagine if you were granted with a shuttle that could take you literally anywhere but just once (roundtrip of course). Would you choose to use it to go to a place on earth you’ve always eager to visit or would you rather go to outer space? When would the chance repeat itself?! The two CGI giants we previously mentioned, created masterpieces in the industry, earning them plenty of recognition and awards.  The first “Toy Story”, for instance, was an important milestone in the history of this technique, being the first feature film entirely produced in CGI. What till that moment was considered impossible finally became possible. It changed the animation universe forever! Or think about Monster’s Inc and how the fur in Sully, one of the two protagonists, looked. Pixar decided to outdo themselves by making his fur long and fine. Let’s just say that they triumphed in the richness of the details for this movie. So, these studios keep using CGI because the quality is higher and the effects are more easily controllable than with a live-action. It also gives them the possibility of creating images that couldn’t be created otherwise by using other technologies. Plus, it allows one single artist to create content without actors or expensive supplies. As a matter of fact, Equipment is another big issue when it comes to live-action movies and you shouldn’t take it lightly. When producing a live-action film, you can’t ignore the fact that you have to carry around cameras, tripods, lights, all the things that you will be needing when filming. On the contrary, with CGI content, the only thing you’ll be needing is a computer, the appropriate software, and voilà! This doesn’t only affect the weight you have to carry with you when producing the content, but also the costs you have to invest in buying all of these supplies.  In addition, a live-action video is limited to external influences like weather, locations, actors’ skills. The only limit we can find for a CGI content is imagination. Creativity is all you need to begin producing the video. With CGI content you can visit enchanted places, fly to other planets, visit the underwater world. Your only restraints are in your mind. In order to achieve something like this with a live-action film is by spending hundreds of thousands of dollars. With CGI content you can create monsters, charming creatures, vast landscapes. Everything becomes possible with CGI!  

Some still-frames from the CGI movie "Jurassic War" we created for Cinecittà World's immersive tunnel. Thanks to Computer Generated Imagery, impossible becomes possible: dinosaurs come to life!

  This is important since most theme parks goers when they experience a media-based attraction of any kind, want to live something extraordinary, something that cannot be replicated. Plus, they want to live it themselves on their own skin, they want to dive into the story. With CGI you can make them immerse in an out-of-this-world adventure, witness creatures that only live in dreams (or nightmares), visit places straight out of fairy tales. Always remember that it’s the story that drives the attraction. And there is no better way than delivering a story that makes the audience say “Wow, it’s amazing”! To sum it all up, relying on real-life footage not only is just too costly and many professionals realize that the game is simply not worth the risk, but most importantly it lacks all the amazing sceneries and characters you could have with computer-generated imagery. If you can imagine it, with CGI you can do it!

Do you want to be the first to know about our latest news and access our exclusive content?

Join the Red Raion Club for free by subscribing to our newsletter!