James Dean Gets Resurrected With CGI For 2020 Film But Not Everyone Is Stoked
By Thanussha Priyah, 07 Nov 2019
Image via In-house publicity still / Wikimedia Commons
The late iconic actor James Dean will star in a new film in 2020 through the magic of CGI. Dean’s portrayal as a troubled teenager in 1955’s Rebel Without a Cause had represented a whole generation of youngsters. However, the actor met his untimely demise at the age of 24 in a car crash.
But the film that propelled him to become a pop culture icon premiered three weeks after his passing, resulting in a staggering amount of ticket sales for that time. His legacy has since lived on and influenced following generations of actors.
Now, Dean will appear on the big screen once again, 65 years after his death. He has been posthumously casted in a Vietnam War-era film adapted by Maria Sova from Gareth Crocker’s novel in the same title, Finding Jack.
The film, directed by Anton Ernst and Tati Golykh, is based on a time where more than 10,000 military dogs were left abandoned after the end of the Vietnam War.
The directors’ latest production house, Magic City Films, attained the rights from Dean’s family to use his image to cast him for a secondary lead role named Rogan.
Director Ernst claims that Dean’s family views Finding Jack as the actor’s fourth film and promises that his legacy will be “kept firmly intact,” and that the producers “do not intend to let his fans down.”
Canadian VFX banner Imagine Engine will work with South African VFX company MOI Worldwide to bring “a realistic version of James Dean” onscreen. The Hollywood Reporter revealed that Dean will be constructed in a “full body” CGI, which will use actual footage and photos of the actor. However, he will be voiced by another actor.
The preproduction of Finding Jack will kickstart on 17 November 2019, and the film is set to release worldwide on Veterans Day 2020.
Some might find this news exciting, but not everyone is on board. When the news broke out on Twitter, Captain America actor Chris Evans posted his disappointment on the platform.
Evans sarcastically wrote, “I’m sure he’d be thrilled,” before revealing his true feelings about the move: “This is awful.”
“Maybe we can get a computer to paint us a new Picasso. Or write a couple new John Lennon tunes,” he added. “The complete lack of understanding here is shameful.”
Devon Sawa, who had auditioned for another role for the same film echoed the sentiment by tweeting, “They couldn't give this role to an actual human?”
Lord of the Rings star Elijah Wood wasn’t pleased with the digitally-constructed James Dean on screen as well, as he tweeted, “Nope. This shouldn’t be a thing.”
Many Twitter users also frowned upon the news of Dean’s casting. “Just leave James alone!” one user wrote. Another remarked, “Art is too personal to create posthumous works that the living version may never have wanted to bring to the public.”
I’m sure he’d be thrilled 🙄— Chris Evans (@ChrisEvans) November 6, 2019
This is awful.
Maybe we can get a computer to paint us a new Picasso. Or write a couple new John Lennon tunes.
The complete lack of understanding here is shameful. https://t.co/hkwXyTR4pu
NOPE. this shouldn’t be a thing. https://t.co/RH7jWY5cAG— Elijah Wood (@elijahwood) November 6, 2019
Fun fact: James Dean won't be starring in this film because he's dead, someone will just be playing him with a CGI'd skin, and also there are cheaper ways to get to the uncanny valley if you really want to go therehttps://t.co/ofka6b0xvs— John Scalzi (@scalzi) November 6, 2019
Ugh! I Can’t!! No! No! No!— Brad Everett Young (@BradEYoung) November 7, 2019
Just Because They ‘Can’ Doesn’t Mean They ‘Should!’
If this is the future of entertainment I’m looking for Time Travel to get me outta here!!! :( #SorryJames #JamesDean https://t.co/5jpzNt7zAq pic.twitter.com/vyswiBdpRz
When the "only person" who can play the part you've written has been dead for nearly 70 years, I'd suggest you find a new casting director before reanimating the corpse of James Dean. pic.twitter.com/RTqJ2TPvSo— 𝗔𝗶𝗱𝗮𝗻 𝗢’𝗕𝗿𝗶𝗲𝗻 (@artimusfoul) November 6, 2019
"We couldn't find a non-dead actor for the role of a white guy in a Vietnam war movie" is truly an amazing take https://t.co/oOoN1BDkA6— andi zeisler (@andizeisler) November 6, 2019
Just leave James alone!!!!! pic.twitter.com/Rge1VX55C8— Swizzlestick (@Swizzlestick8) November 7, 2019
1. We should not steal people's faces and force them to dance for us against their will.— M.C. Myers (@filmobjective) November 7, 2019
2. The problem w/ movies is not that actors have TOO MUCH input. Imagine a movie made entirely by producers: that's the future we're making.
Art is too personal to create posthumous works that the living version may never have wanted to bring to the public.— Jordan Harland (@JodeHarland) November 6, 2019
[via Harper’s Bazaar, images via In-house publicity still / Wikimedia Commons]
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