Gravity may have missed out on Best Picture last night, but Alfonso Cuarón's 3D outerspace epic picked up a raft of technical awards, including Cinematography, Film Editing, Sound Mixing and Sound Editing, Visual Effects and for good measure, a directing Oscar for Cuarón.
To be honest, Gravity didn't face many real challengers for these categories. The movie is a visual-effects masterpiece — it took Cuarón three years to conceive and execute the special effects, in some cases pioneering entirely new technology to capture the look and feel of zero gravity.
Of course, all of Gravity's complicated computer graphics are in the service of making space look real — like an astronaut might experience it. To prove that point, last night NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center released a photo set of new and vintage images taken by astronauts and NASA staff that look eerily similar to Cuaron's version of space — only it's all real. You can see some of them in the gallery above (the Canadarm makes an appearance in photo #10), and the rest are available on NASA's Flickr page, here.
Alfonso Cuarón (that's Academy Award Winner Alfonso Cuarón now) was in the red chair earlier this season, and he talked about the seemingly interminable process of making Gravity — and the risks he took making such a technically ambitious film.
"The only way I can define this process is it was a big miscalculation," he told George. "I really miscalculated how difficult this was going to be. I thought it was going to be a simple film because it's only two characters. But the thing is also I think the studio miscalculated the same thing. And the actors, they also didn't know what they were getting into. And what happens, it's like you know when you're swimming in a lake? And you lose sight of the shore? And now you're just hoping that the next shore across the lake is closer.
"But it was longer."
"That's how people die," George said.
"You're right. It was a miscalculation. It was irresponsibility. The right word for this film."
Via The Verge