CFP: [Film] The Science of Special Effects (5/1/08; 10/30-11/2/08)

full name / name of organization: 
Cynthia Miller
contact email: 
cymiller@tiac.net

Call for Papers
“The ‘Science’ of Special Effects: Aesthetic Approaches to Industry” Area
2008 Film & History Conference
Film & Science: Fictions, Documentaries, and Beyond
October 30-November 2, 2008
Chicago, Illinois
www.uwosh.edu/filmandhistory
Second-Round Deadline: May 1, 2008

AREA: The “Science” of Special Effects: Aesthetic Approaches to Industry

This area examines the industrial, technological, theoretical, and
aesthetic questions surrounding special-effects technologies. Presenters
may investigate historical changes in special and visual effects, as in
the gradual switch from physical to digital applications; they may focus
on the use of visual effects in film or television texts that do not fit
into typically spectacle-driven genres (i.e., effects in drama, comedy,
and musical narratives instead of in action-adventure, science fiction,
or fantasy); they may consider the theoretical implications of
special/visual effects and technology on texts; or they may concentrate
on neglected historical and aesthetic values of effects development.

Possible papers or panels might include the following:

-- An investigation of the terms “Special Effect” and “Visual Effect,”
what they constitute, and how their definitions have been delineated and
complicated by changing technologies.

-- Special/visual effects “stars” such as (Keynote Speaker) Stan Winston,
Douglas Trumbull, or Richard Edlund, and their impact on the construction
and application of visual effects images for mainstream/non-mainstream
cinema.

-- The changing relationship between visual effects technologies and pre-
production, i.e. looking at “previz,” at the development of
films “around” their effects sequences, or at the use of physical
materials such as maquettes as templates for eventual CG elements.

-- How contemporary visual-effects practitioners negotiate and
incorporate real world “physics” into their design of digital characters
(“synthespians”) and environments.

-- How visual effects contribute to the formation of
complete “environments” on screen, how they are incorporated into
narratives, and how meaning is affected when a physical environment is
entirely fabricated.

--The implementation of special/visual effects by costume and motion-
capture “artists” and actors, and how studies of these practices can
offer insight into classic and contemporary working relationships between
effects practitioners, actors and crew.

-- The Visual Effects Society and its impact on the industry and
filmmaking throughout the organization’s history.

-- How directors or other creative personalities use physical and digital
effects in their projects (e.g., Robert Zemeckis’ application of digital
technologies or Guillermo Del Toro’s proclaimed interest in keeping a
50/50 balance between physical and digital effects).

Please send your 200-word proposal by May 1, 2008 to the area chairs:

Michael S. Duffy, Bob Rehak, Area Chairs, “The ‘Science’ of Special
Effects”
Email: michael.s.duffy_at_googlemail.com, brehak1_at_swarthmore.edu

Panel proposals for up to four presenters are also welcome, but each
presenter must submit his or her own paper proposal. Deadline for
proposals: May 1, 2008.

This area, comprising multiple panels, is a part of the 2008 biennial
Film & History Conference, sponsored by The Center for the Study of Film
and History. Speakers will include founder John O’Connor and editor Peter
C. Rollins (in a ceremony to celebrate the transfer to the University of
Wisconsin Oshkosh); Wheeler Winston Dixon, author of Visions of the
Apocalypse, Disaster and Memory, and Lost in the Fifties: Recovering
Phantom Hollywood; Sidney Perkowitz, Charles Howard Candler Professor of
Physics at Emory University and author of Hollywood Science: Movies,
Science, & the End of the World; and special-effects legend Stan Winston,
our Keynote Speaker. For updates and registration information about the
upcoming meeting, see the Film & History website
(www.uwosh.edu/filmandhistory).

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Received on Tue Mar 25 2008 - 16:24:55 EST

cfp categories: 
film_and_television