In 1977 Star Wars Episode 4: A New Hope was released and the computer image that the rebel pilots viewed when attacking the Death Star was the first extensive use of animated 3-D Computer animation (or CGI).

In 1979 Alien was released and the film used a raster wireframe 3-D model rendering for the Nostromo’s navigational charts on its computer monitors. The film is best know for the chest-burster scene where a small alien bursts from one of the character’s chest before looking around and scurrying away.

In 1981 Raiders of the lost ark was released and it’s more remarkable shots were where a giant bolder was rolling after Harrison Ford’s character in the opening and the final image of the government warehouse where the Ark was stored —  a lengthy matte shot.

In 1986 Labyrinth was released and the opening CGI credits/title sequence featured a glass ball and a flying digital owl – the first realistic CGI animal. The film also included an impressive M.C. Escher-style production design, including the final “stairway sequence”

 

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