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 Post subject: efx Vader paint job
PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2011 6:31 pm 
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In all the furor over the C-scar one subject that I feel was not adequately explored is the "other cheek", if you will, of the efx Master. I'm intrigued by the way Gino painted the lower portion of the right cheek, or whatever we want to call that part of the helmet, gunmetal gray and left the "whisker" black:

Image

My knee-jerk reaction of course was/is that it is wrong but to play devil's advocate what if it's correct? I've been going over everything that I have and to date I've only seen one scenario that even suggests painting both faces of Vader's right cheek is correct and that is in the 2004 DVD documentary:

Image

Thing is, if you watch the few seconds that the screen cap is taken from you can see the color of the lower portion of the cheek appear to go from black to gray so even that isn't solid. Interesting also to note how the chest armor appears all gray in the screen cap as well. My working theory is that the helmet was obviously re-touched constantly throughout principle photography (which resulted in the conditions that made the c-scar possible) so maybe they painted the cheek that way for one or two shots then changed it back--if it was ever painted that way at all.

There are what appear to be brush strokes on that portion of the cheek in both the LFL/RB castings and TM castings but that doesn't mean that the brush ever had gunmetal gray paint in it. The overwhelming majority of picture information shows that bit is black but definitive pictures showing that part of the helmet to be black are nearly all post-production. Lighting plays wonderful tricks with the helmet and the combination of colors so it's no wonder that it is confusing.

Anybody have a smoking gun or nail to pound into the coffin either way?


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 Post subject: Re: efx Vader paint job
PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2011 6:44 pm 
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Location: London, UK
dcarty wrote:
Thing is, if you watch the few seconds that the screen cap is taken from you can see the color of the lower portion of the cheek appear to go from black to gray so even that isn't solid. Interesting also to note how the chest armor appears all gray in the screen cap as well.



Don't discount the fact that sensitometry values and post processing could have affected this. Some film stock latitude (especially CNR - used through most of late 70's) has a particular latitude. Also, the scanning to video could have suffered.
The Rank Cinitel telecine machines were notoriously variable in their colour reproduction.


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 Post subject: Re: efx Vader paint job
PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2011 11:32 pm 
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I have a few references that are 'questionable' in that area... suggesting gunmetal; but more refs that strongly support that it is black, NOT gunmetal. My vote: BLACK.


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 Post subject: Re: efx Vader paint job
PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2011 2:26 am 
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Are we talking about the crease between the cheek front and side of the mouth?


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 Post subject: Re: efx Vader paint job
PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2011 3:01 am 
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No, the actual side of the mouth triangle... I think?


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 Post subject: Re: efx Vader paint job
PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2011 9:29 am 
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Zuka Zamamee wrote:
No, the actual side of the mouth triangle... I think?


I think it's dark gunmetal or a black lighter than the other black .


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 Post subject: Re: efx Vader paint job
PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2011 2:25 pm 
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Well, yes there are spots all over the mask that actually vary... mixed a bit, but I think it is 'supposed' to be black in that area rather than the highlight gunmetal color...


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 Post subject: Re: efx Vader paint job
PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2011 3:55 pm 
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I vote for a mixed color there as well.


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 Post subject: Re: efx Vader paint job
PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2011 5:32 pm 
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I've always finished mine black on that side and gun metal the other....


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 Post subject: Re: efx Vader paint job
PostPosted: Sat May 28, 2011 10:34 am 
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I would say, like the gunmetal weathering on the right cheek, the left mouth wall is just that... light weathering. You can see the same exact brush stroke weathering on the inside mouth walls, possibly even the teeth and the right tusk tube. Seeing as the left rear cheek area also seems darker in part than the rest of the gunmetal, perhaps that indeed IS black and only weathered lightly with gunmetal, picking up the light in certain angles, making the repaint look and the ESB style paint job the ACCURATE paint scheme, but only obscured by the additional weathering on the ANH. Otherwise, when repainting the helmet, why add that black rear left cheek area, if it was gunmetal to begin with? Would also explain the tape line seen in that area suggesting the masking when applying the initial grey, while keeping it off the black.

Just a theory.

It could also be as I've suggested previously, that they painted too much gunmetal and then brushed some areas black again, with the paint never really covering the gunmetal. The only true black spray painted surface left intact is the upper cheek area under the left eye. The rest doesn't have the glossy black look to it.

Or... the eFX paint job could be correct. I'm just not seeing it, but hey, I could be wrong.


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 Post subject: Re: efx Vader paint job
PostPosted: Mon May 30, 2011 4:18 pm 
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I watched 1080i transfer of Star Wars again last night on the projector and it certainly seemed like the coloring on the right mouth wall of the helmet was subtly different. It was most evident to me in just a few brief shots when Vader is in his TIE Fighter and during the strangling of Capt Antilles.

I won't go so far as to say anything other than that I was left with the "impression" that it looked different. After all, the light is bouncing every which way off the angles of that helmet. I do find that I'm really liking the idea that the right mouth wall was gunmetal at some point then re-painted black but we'll just have to see if anything more concrete turns up.


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 Post subject: Re: efx Vader paint job
PostPosted: Mon May 30, 2011 5:37 pm 
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Ya I was curious about this too before, and these images together show that it is a slightly darker shade of gunmetal, but not black.

Image

I think the whisker might be the same shade, or at least it is gunmetal, not black as shown below best in the TIE cockpit sequences.

Image


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 Post subject: Re: efx Vader paint job
PostPosted: Mon May 30, 2011 11:41 pm 
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I know it's questionable, and even in some instances I can see maybe some brush-strokes... but it is pretty dark... NOT even close to the same shade as on the front of the left cheek...


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 Post subject: Re: efx Vader paint job
PostPosted: Tue May 31, 2011 8:05 pm 
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I don't know, look at the whisker on the right side, you can see when light hits it directly that it is not black. Based on the overhanging angle of that whisker, it will invariably be in more shadow than adjacent sections. That's why the TIE cockpit images are so telling. They are from a low angle so the light hits the whiskers directly. Plus the lighting was darker in the TIE so there are no harsh surface reflections like you get with other onset lighting. With a pure reflection it isn't possible to tell if it is black or gunmetal, but with diffuse lighting like on the TIE, it is. :whip2


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 Post subject: Re: efx Vader paint job
PostPosted: Tue May 31, 2011 10:54 pm 
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Were there any paint touch ups done before the Tie scenes were filmed?


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