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It is time for The Behind the Scenes Pic of the Day to renew!

Ahoy, squirts! Quint here with today’s Behind the Scenes Pic!

Hot on the heels of yesterday’s sweet pic of the ILM model team filming ET’s spaceship I wanted to focus on another great piece of model work.

God I love this stuff. Today’s picture, from the making of Logan’s Run, blows my mind. That’s massive! Look at those people putting the finishing touches on the models! They’re like Godzillas!

The detail of this cityscape is incredible, the sci-fi design is fun as hell and just the sheer amount of blood, sweat and elbow grease that went into building such a thing awes me.

Thanks to reader Rajneel Singh for sending this one along. Click to embiggen!



If you have a behind the scenes shot you’d like to submit to this column, you can email me at

Tomorrow’s behind the scenes pic has a bad out-FIT. WHOOO!!!!

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Readers Talkback
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  • June 3, 2011, 3:22 p.m. CST


    by whatyoufear

    Logan should walk at a normal pace.

  • June 3, 2011, 3:24 p.m. CST

    More like Logan's FAIL.

    by JMG84

  • June 3, 2011, 3:24 p.m. CST

    they don't make them like that anymore.

    by coolenough

    brilliant work.

  • June 3, 2011, 3:28 p.m. CST

    Truly awesome picture

    by slone13

    Superman tomorrow?

  • June 3, 2011, 3:28 p.m. CST

    Dallas skyline

    by Caveman469

    The old Zales building (gold on the right) still brings back memories every time I drive by it.... it was Sandman HQ.

  • June 3, 2011, 3:38 p.m. CST

    I can do a spot on impression of Michael York

    by alan_poon

    Repeatedly saying "There is NOOOOOOO sanctuary."

  • June 3, 2011, 3:42 p.m. CST

    Yeah, it does look "model-y" in the movie, but fuck, that is still cool.

    by WriteForTheEdit

  • June 3, 2011, 3:42 p.m. CST

    I had such wonderful memories of Logan's Run

    by shran

    Hadn't seen it in ages so I bought the DVD when I saw it on the shelf. It did not age well. And for as big as that cityscape miniature is they sure didn't film it well. It looks about the same size as it appears in real life, if not smaller. No sense of size at all. Better off reading the book.

  • I read that bitch was around 60 feet long...

  • June 3, 2011, 3:43 p.m. CST

    has_snyder cinematography is just as important...

    by Tacom

    to make models look real. Like in BLADE RUNNER or Tim Burton's BATMAN.

  • June 3, 2011, 3:45 p.m. CST

    great goldsmith score


  • June 3, 2011, 3:49 p.m. CST

    Looks like EPCOT

    by rev_skarekroe

    I wish the future they designed in the '70s had come to pass.

  • I still want one of those Sandman Guns. Anyone here ever watch Superjail? They have two characters on there that dress like Sandmen.

  • June 3, 2011, 4:20 p.m. CST

    It looked like a model, but still damn impressive

    by Tom Thatcher

  • June 3, 2011, 4:20 p.m. CST


    by Judge Dredds Dirty Undies

    I doff my cap to another Goldsmith fan. The film may not have aged well but the score and Jenny Agutter are reason enough to watch Logans Run.

  • June 3, 2011, 4:22 p.m. CST


    by alienindisguise

    Pains me to think that most or all of those models ended up in the trash somewhere.

  • June 3, 2011, 4:23 p.m. CST

    Judge Dredd re: Jenny Agutter

    by schadenfreudian

    100% correct. She was ridiculous.

  • June 3, 2011, 4:30 p.m. CST

    judge dread


    Alex DeLarge beats off to Ludwig. I beat off to Jerry as I think of Jenny.

  • June 3, 2011, 4:56 p.m. CST

    Donald Moffat as Rem

    by Gorgomel

    I know it's the tv serie, I know it's cheesy. But it was the most awesome tv show when I was a kid. Release this on DVD & Blu

  • June 3, 2011, 4:58 p.m. CST

    This is the job I would want to do if I was in the movie biz

    by Badger23

    That...or being Jenny Agutter's "handgrip."

  • June 3, 2011, 5:07 p.m. CST

    "they don't make them like that anymore."

    by Dreamwriter

    Look up the Behind the Scenes pic for Inception, that movie had some rather sizable models.

  • June 3, 2011, 5:11 p.m. CST

    coolenough: "they don't make them like that anymore."

    by JethroBodine

    You said it pal, you said it. Makes me sad too. Sure it looked like a model like everyone has said, but damnit, they TRIED. It's EVIDENT. You can't say that about today's effects. I'm looking at YOU GEORGE LUCAS! LAMENTATIONS LAMENTATIONS LAMENTATIONS

  • June 3, 2011, 5:15 p.m. CST

    As someone who did not grow up with this movie...

    by HansBubi

    ...I first watched this movie a year or two ago, and I recognize its the kind of sci-fi movie that doesn't compare to the classics of its time, and today it fares even worse, yet I still like it to an extent. I enjoy these kinds of movies because they have a certain sci-fi movie charm, even when they're not executed as well as our favorite sci-fi movies. Logan's Run is the kind of movie that you do have to watch with adjusted (lowered?) expectations, yet I still find it fun and thought-provoking. I even enjoy its dated-ness a little.

  • June 3, 2011, 5:15 p.m. CST

    The death of Practical Effects saddens me.

    by Secretagentnumber6

    Sure some movies like Inception still use this kind of stuff, but CGI unfortunately us the go to these days. I miss the days like this BTSPOD.

  • June 3, 2011, 5:20 p.m. CST

    Superman (tomorrow)!!

    by MapMan

    Hey jim, that's a bad out-fit! Excuse me! Wooo!!

  • June 3, 2011, 5:52 p.m. CST

    Okay, if it looks like a model in the movie...

    by bah

    ...then someone please explain why models are automatically better than CG?

  • But people who have it in their heads that models always look better than CG are kidding themselves.

  • Check out Toho's "Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All Out Attack." There is a ton of model work in there that looks fantastic (when the Big G blows shit up, HE BLOWS SHIT UP!!!). And I'll bet the budget for that movie was less Roland Emmerich's salary for his GINO.

  • June 3, 2011, 6:02 p.m. CST

    Choppa thats the kind of wank fantasy

    by Judge Dredds Dirty Undies

    that demands respect. And now I fancy watching An American Werewolf...

  • June 3, 2011, 6:16 p.m. CST

    I had no idea the model was so MASSIVE

    by AlienFanatic

    I knew that it was a model, of course, but I'm staggered by the sheer size of the model. It's truly amazing how much work used to go into these. Nowadays, a small team of computer artists could knock out a more detailed version in a matter of a week or two. I admire the craftsmanship of the old style, and it's hard not to feel a bit nostalgic, but time marches on.

  • June 3, 2011, 6:22 p.m. CST

    As our generation of geeks ages...

    by AlienFanatic

    We can at least look back at the "good old days" of practical effects. I feel sorry for the kids of the next 50 years or so who, when they look back at these Behind-the-Scenes FX shots will see the same thing every time: A pasty fat dude or a pasty scruffy dude or a pasty scruffy chick staring at a monitor, pen tablet at the ready, working on some key shot. That's it. With the death of practical effects, it's hard to get excited about the nerd kingdom FX has become. Less and less of the cool, "Hey, look at the guy in the rubber suit!" or "Man, that model must have taken WEEKS and about a billion battleship Revell kits to make!" *sigh*

  • June 3, 2011, 6:24 p.m. CST

    Awesome model. Just needed atmosphere to sell it.

    by Batutta

    In Blade Runner, they pumped the air full of smoke to give it the proper density, to scale the air down as well so it would diffuse the light properly.

  • June 3, 2011, 6:37 p.m. CST

    Forced perspective?

    by mascan42

    I'm not sure even the model's as big as it looks.

  • June 3, 2011, 6:41 p.m. CST

    What is cooler than that?

    by BackwardGalaxy

    Nothing, that's what.

  • June 3, 2011, 7:03 p.m. CST

    LR & SW

    by Unscripted

    I always felt that Logan's Run was the last old-style studio science fiction movie, and the world changed with Star Wars just a few months later.

  • June 3, 2011, 7:28 p.m. CST

    The best parts of this movie . . .

    by DrMorbius

    were located on Jenny Agutters chest!!!

  • June 3, 2011, 7:35 p.m. CST

    Logan's Buns

    by Bobo_Vision

    Starring Ted "Theodore" Logan. Excellent!!!

  • June 3, 2011, 7:35 p.m. CST

    James Arness (The Thing From Another World) has passed . . .

    by DrMorbius

    Did I miss the obit?

  • June 3, 2011, 8:27 p.m. CST

    by The Cosh

    There've been plenty of cooler pics in this series but there's something about this one that really touches me. The amount of love and energy and artistry that's implied in that photo, and it's all been poured into a semi-decent sci-fi film. Obviously, the same professionalism goes on today, but we'll never see it in quite the same physical way. Saw Silent Running recently and it's a similar sort of film for me. Not brilliant, not even something I have an affection for, but it has a good heart and a good look and god bless films like Sunshine and Moon which carry on that tradition.

  • June 3, 2011, 8:47 p.m. CST

    That model is way bigger than I thought it was

    by Nem_Wan

    I had the same reaction when I learned the original Starship Enterprise model is 11 feet long, because the lack of detail you see on screen doesn't seem to justify the size. By comparison, the hero model of the Millennium Falcon was 5 feet long.

  • June 3, 2011, 8:48 p.m. CST

    If you think Lucas doesn't use models anymore..

    by MajorFrontbum

    ...then you have absolutely no fucking idea, what goes into making a Star Wars prequel film. There are more models in a single prequel, than the entire original trilogy. I'm looking at you jethrobodine REVELATIONS REVELATIONS REVELATIONS.

  • June 3, 2011, 8:55 p.m. CST

    Were'nt the model shots also used for the planet "Ork"?

    by Lao_Che_Air_Freight

    As in Mork from Ork? Or am I thinking of another TV show? I just remember some TV show borrowing those shots for whenever they would cut to the alien planet.

  • June 3, 2011, 9:18 p.m. CST

    Sigh... When you'd see a movie and actually wonder

    by Flip63Hole

    How the fuck did they do that? Now it's just, "Wow. Great rendering, nice lens flare."

  • June 3, 2011, 9:30 p.m. CST

    Much bigger than I thought

    by ObiBen

  • June 3, 2011, 9:33 p.m. CST

    OK I'm convinced-scuze me while I whip this out.

    by m.dung

    time for another spin of this classic. Great picture Quint. One of my all time favorites.

  • Then again, I never saw it until a few years ago, so I have no fond childhood memories of it.

  • June 3, 2011, 10:54 p.m. CST

    looks like a gang of giants visiting tiny town

    by seabiscuits

  • June 3, 2011, 11:52 p.m. CST

    Shiny, un-weathered, brightly-lit plexi/plastic structures ...

    by justmyluck

    ... did not scale well for VFX cinematography.

  • June 4, 2011, 12:53 a.m. CST

    Hey, where'd my comment go?

    by Flip63Hole


  • June 4, 2011, 2:17 a.m. CST

    Wow, the model is about 100 times bigger than I thought

    by Seven_of_Borgnine

    I cringe every time I see it on the screen... beautiful, but a bit too obvious. I pretend not to notice (as I love the movie), but now it requires a bit of effort. Logan's Run has not aged as well as 2001 (which still looks oddly modern, even today). It's tiring having to pretend that I'm still a kid for the entire movie. I still love it anyway, however.. some scenes and effects are still extremely effective, and the movie retains a dark, eerie, goofy, charm... like Zardoz Lite. But I digress. The failure of this shot was not due to lack of detail (or scale!) of the model itself. The cinematographer and/or director (or somebody other than the model dept) apparently screwed that shot up big time. I had no idea it was bigger than a model train set on a ping-pong table. I think it's the tube transit system kind of gives it away, that and the water. They should have shot this at super high speed and slowed it down or something. The zoom-in and pans are too fast (the shot looks like the intro to Mr Roger's Neighborhood shot over the model town). An awesome matte painting with some moving stuff composited over it (a la Harryhausen) would have been more evocative than the way this one shot turned out.

  • June 4, 2011, 2:41 a.m. CST

    Nice work on the city, but the bad trees and lack of people...

    by Darth_Inedible addition to the vague lighting always ruined these shots for me. Could have been amazing if they'd shot with better light and had at least some indication of human pedestrian activity.

  • Fucking hilarious I need to find that episode

  • June 4, 2011, 3:20 a.m. CST


    by JethroBodine

    I'll reckon that you're LOOKING at me with the same eyes that make you think that anything George Lucas has done lately looks good. Nuff said.

  • June 4, 2011, 5:24 a.m. CST

    lao che air freight

    by lochkray

    Re: use of the model in T.V. show I think there was a Logon's Run TV show that used recycled footage of the city from the movie (over and over and over). I also think the show was on for about six episodes. I could wikipedia to find out, but I think I'll go retro and rely on my bad memory. I also have to comment, that model was WAY bigger than I thought it was. Great Pic.

  • June 4, 2011, 8:10 a.m. CST

    This site is stupid, whaa, whaa, whaa

    by lochkray

    This site doesn't have anything new. Harry has no credibility. Pics of the day are dumb. AICN sold out. Ain't it boring news. This used to be cool, now its lame. Aint it Cool is dead. Me am so smart and cool - I hang around this site posting how pathetic it is on the message boards. Blah, blah, blah, blah. Jeeesus, I can handle anybody posting an opinion contrary to my own, but I can't fucking stand people who post on thses threads how lame the site is. That's like bitching that a girl is a slut while you're balls deep in her. Dimwits.

  • June 4, 2011, 9:24 a.m. CST

    Cool, very cool

    by IamZardoz

    They tore down the Apparel Mart in Dallas which is that bizarro interior that looks like a mall designed by Gaudi or somebody. As for LR, I loved it and especially "Box!....Box!...." Seagreens ect....

  • June 4, 2011, 9:47 a.m. CST

    Definitely could've been shot better.

    by chifforobe

    The model actually seems smaller in the film-- probably because of the depth of field and the bad crane movement. The camera should've moved slowly and smoothly, as if attached to a helicopter-- it could've been a killer shot, instead of just an okay shot of a well-designed city.

  • June 4, 2011, 10:40 a.m. CST

    yep, it looked pretty shitty on screen

    by Grace_Panda

    but not nearly as bad as that robot who lives in the ice cave about half way through the movie! I defy anyone not to piss themselves laughing when he appears!

  • June 4, 2011, 1:07 p.m. CST

    Welcome to Disney's Contemporary Hotel. All 30 year old guests

    by UltraTron

    must sign in at the special red kiosk to await renewal. You guys and your model/cgi bitching. Never gets old. Here's the deal. Watch 98 Godzilla in hd. See that shot where his head is coming out and smashing the pier? See how the water is just miniature water in slow motion. See how it's not the right scale? Now look at dawn trader in hd. See how the water simulation looks better than miniature scale water. It has the correct weight. Now understand that even the miniatures are designed in the computer and milled by machine. Now understand that some things are digital exstensions to actual models. Now understand that Hollywood has never stopped using all available technologies. Now grow and learn and evolve

  • June 4, 2011, 1:09 p.m. CST

    The starwars prequels use more actual models than

    by UltraTron

    any movies ILM has ever made. You probably thought most of it was digital. Then again most of you think a woman's breast feels like a bag of sand

  • June 4, 2011, 2:23 p.m. CST

    This was the first movie I ever saw twice in the theater

    by Snookeroo

    Which was a big deal for a kid my age. Little did I know that Star Wars was right around the corner - which would change everything.

  • June 4, 2011, 2:30 p.m. CST

    SWs prequels...

    by Ice Paul

    I don't get the argument about the Star Wars prequels using loads of models... what does that prove? It just shows that model work can look bad, which we already know it can if it isn't done correctly. Lucas somehow took models and made them look like shiny whizzing around totally unrealistic CGI stuff. That's just another example of bad use of models, not an argument about models in general. The pro-model argument is that if shot correctly (and not made to look like bland CGI), models can look awesome, and can arguably look more REAL than anything done with CGI. Eg. the sandcrawler in the original trilogy looks way more like a real thing than the computer-game versions in the prequels.

  • June 4, 2011, 2:40 p.m. CST

    Glad to see the Goldsmith love

    by m_prevette

    The score is indeed excellent. If you don't have the full score CD from Film Score Monthly, grab it. Essential 70's scoring

  • June 4, 2011, 2:43 p.m. CST


    by UltraTron

    You haven't the slightest idea what you are talking about.

  • June 4, 2011, 3 p.m. CST

    Ice Paul and Star Wars Models

    by lochkray

    (Sigh) I can't believe I'm going to allow myself sucked into another Star Wars debate, and I don't want to get onto the prequel defence panel, but... The model work in the prequels was amazing. They were in no way examples of "bad use of models". That they matched the look of the rest of the film is a testiment to their quality, not a failure. You can certainly argue that you don't like the sheen of the movie itself, but that was Lucas' choice, and ILM pulled it off just fine and dandy. In fact, some of it could be argued to be the best model work on film. Want a look at bad model work? Let's really look at the original '77 Star Wars (and I love me some original Star Wars). The models were weak on the Death Star Attack - I'm sorry, but they was. Stunning and revolutionary at the time, but has not aged very well. Plastic boxes with parts from off-the-shelf scale car parts. And those amazing shots of the sand crawler? Double check what you're looking at. The most impressive take of the sandcrawler passing by was from the special edition, augmented guessed it...CGI. A lot of people don't realize that there was a switch there (not so famous as Greedo shooting first), but the original shot of the sandcrawler coming over a dune wasn't all that stunning. Not bad, per se, but hardly the best example of model work.

  • I doubt that Hollywood of today could do it justice. They would go to far on one or the other. Most likely a remake would be even worse, as they would HAVE to go with an "emo" feel, and turn it into Logan's Twilight. *barf barf*

  • June 4, 2011, 4:09 p.m. CST

    Ultatron: welcome to the comment section.

    by Flip63Hole

    Can't get enough sarcastic, CG-loving children trolling the internet. See ya around, kiddo...

  • The prequels are an example of bad model work because the end result looked awful... not in "I can tell it's a model" way, but in a "this looks like a bunch of overly detailed CGI whizzing around in a cartoon" sort of way. The fact that everyone thinks it is all CGI is a testament to how badly the models were handled. People thought it was all dull CGI work... so congrats, they managed to make models look like unconvincing CGI. And I'm talking about the sandcrawler in the original versions, not the special editions. It looks awesome and is totally convincing because it doesn't look like it rolled out of a video game. And the scene you mentioned in the originals looks more convincing than anything out of the prequels. That is part of the problem with the prequels - they thought better meant more detailed and flashy. Unfortunately it actually makes it look less real, less convincing, and that's a big part of the criticism of the prequels.

  • June 4, 2011, 6:35 p.m. CST

    Uh, oh, Ultratron

    by bah

    You made the mistake of forming a reasoned argument with diagrams and examples to back them up.

  • June 4, 2011, 8:14 p.m. CST

    lochray is right on the deathstar sequence models.

    by daglesj

    There are some truly less than amateur model effects shots in the sequence. There is one shot with a X-Wing exploding on the DStar surface and its hilarious in its pathetic exploding model kit style. Out of all the effects shots in Star Wars thats the only one I feel should have been removed and changed but for some bizzare reason Lucas keeps it in. Maybe he knows how bad it is and just keeps it in for a reminder.

  • June 5, 2011, 7:38 a.m. CST

    I saw Logan's Run as a kid

    by The_Crimson_King

    I was ten I think, my dad had remembered it and wanted to see it again so we rented it and I watched it with my mom and dad I'm not gonna say the movie isn't dated, I thought it was kinda cheesy even then, but it has a very good and very interesting story and is well paced

  • June 5, 2011, 11:57 a.m. CST

    Rajneel Singh?

    by SoulOfTheAge

    Of Blank Spaces fame? To those who haven't checked it out, please do, it's one of the best 3 min shorts I've come across. Rajneel, I'm still waiting to hear about your first feature film assignment. I didn't like Big Bad Wolves as much, but that I took the effort to look it up after watching Blank Spaces says something. Good luck man.

  • June 5, 2011, 12:49 p.m. CST

    decent model, poorly loked fake until star wars models

    by FleshMachine

    which lok 10x better and more real than any cgi

  • June 5, 2011, 12:50 p.m. CST

    ok..that made no sense

    by FleshMachine

    i meant: its a decent model, but poorly shot and looked instantly fake. star wars models were done right, great models WELL shot. same with 2001 and the first star trek film. they all look better than cgi.

  • June 5, 2011, 1:07 p.m. CST

    it looked like models in the movie because of...

    by JimmyJoe RedSky

    ... the lighting, the lenses and the camera speed - i dont blame the model makers - although some of the designs and trees look "small" - it was the flat lighting, shallow focus depth and frame rate - the tube cars were too fast during those arial shots and the camera moved through that set like a camera looking at a model, not one flying over a city - it looked like a train set - im shocked to see how big that miniature actually was - the bigger the miniature the better it photographs

  • June 5, 2011, 1:10 p.m. CST

    the sandcrawler on tatooine still looks real...

    by JimmyJoe RedSky

    and that was the size of a tonka truck - but it was sjot right - real sunlight and deep focus at high speed

  • June 5, 2011, 1:13 p.m. CST

    the matte paintings in logan's run were great

    by JimmyJoe RedSky

    the post apocalypse wash. d.c - they made up for the shoddy miniature photography

  • June 5, 2011, 3:51 p.m. CST

    SW prequels proved there's an "uncanny valley" for environmenments

    by Darth_Inedible

    Sure a lot of that stuff was model work, but when you shoot everything with ridiculously precise and dynamic motion control and then digitally comp it with ridiculous precision and then add CG enhancements, color grading and other photoshop-type effects the "real" model work starts looking highly unreal and contrived. This is especially true when you have a certified tweeker like GL at the helm.

  • June 5, 2011, 4:17 p.m. CST

    @jimmyjoe redsky - sandcrawler also looked real because...

    by Ice Paul

    ...we see it as a great matte painting at first, which fits in perfectly with the environment it was composited in, and we see how big it's meant to be (if it were super detailed CGI that would make it look fake, the matte painting makes it look how the human eye would see it) Then they built the bottom half of the sandcrawler - two huge treads and the ladder and door to the sandcrawler, so we see jawas right next to an actual thing you can see is there, and they interact with it... So by the time we see the remote control version coming over the dunes, we've already been sold on it twice, that helps totally nail it. The model version is shot so well that it looks huge even if we didn't have those earlier shots but those earlier shots just totally seal the deal.

  • June 5, 2011, 4:24 p.m. CST

    @darth_inedible - that's what I'm talkin bout...

    by Ice Paul

    Totally agree on the uncanny valley thing... When we look across at a city we can't see tons of detail and a car from like 500 miles away in perfect detail... and even if we could, it wouldn't be moving at a perfect pace, etc. By comparison, the matte painting of cloud city in ROTJ when the Mill Falcon is parked and they're walking out to meet Lando is much more convincing, because the cityscape tapers off into fog and looks like a city would look like. There was no point in using models on the SW prequels - the whole point of models is the way they look if you shoot them right... if you just gloss them all up and make them look like regular CGI, then just use all CGI in the first place. It's like baking a cake and you're like, this is one of the best ever cakes made, but then you take a shit on it and serve it to the customer... may as well not even made the cake in the first place.

  • June 6, 2011, 7:34 a.m. CST

    They did make a re-make of Logan's Run

    by Chris

    And how many people here remember it? People remember Logan's Run but no one remembers The Island with Ewan MacGregor a few years back

  • June 6, 2011, 8:42 a.m. CST

    Logan Run trailer - for shit and giggles

    by BikoQue

  • June 6, 2011, 3:09 p.m. CST

    We didn't need CGI. We had imaginations!

    by ExcaliburFfolkes

  • June 7, 2011, 8:49 p.m. CST

    I jerked off to the novel

    by proevad

    Was one of my first sexual experiences--reading the orgy scene over and over and playing with lil evad. Good times. Liked the movie too, but we were just friends.

  • June 13, 2011, 7:42 a.m. CST

    proevad, you are a sad individual

    by orcus