CGI has long been created to bring life to some of the most incredible films and props that would otherwise be impossible to recreate IRL. In recent years, the technology has advanced to recreate people who had since died – for example, Paul Walker for Furious 7 and Brandon Lee in The Crow. These small snippets of film technology have made way for feature-length films to revive iconic figures, including a de-aged Robert De Niro and Will Smith fighting his own younger self. However the latest CGI casting is controversial to say the least.
Last week, The Hollywood Reporter confirmed Magic City Films had obtained the rights to James Dean’s image through his estate, with his CGI recreation to be featured in the upcoming Vietnam-era drama ‘Finding Jack’. Known for his prolific roles in Rebel Without a Cause and East of Eden, the actor was tragically killed in a car accident in 1955, at just 24 years-of-age. With the hope to recreate the actor for a realistic portrayal, some of Hollywood’s biggest stars have responded in disappointment for the decision.
Chris Evans tweeted, “I’m sure he’d be thrilled” with an eye-rolling emoji. He went on, “This is awful. Maybe we can get a computer to paint us a new Picasso. Or write a couple new John Lennon tunes. The complete lack of understanding here is shameful.”
Dylan Sprouse also replied via Twitter.
Mark Roesler, CEO of CMG Worldwide says in addition to other famous, deceased personalities; the film “opens up a whole new opportunity for many of our clients who are no longer with us.” TO BE READ AS: "Found a new way to rob graves of dead icons and milk the masses for less!" https://t.co/67Nxze0wLN
— Dylan Sprouse (@dylansprouse) November 6, 2019
One user posted, “James Dean is being resurrected by CGI to appear in an upcoming movie. Don’t ever let anyone tell you things have gotten more difficult for white guys in Hollywood. Even dead ones can still get a job,” And another said, “I think it’s totally cool when living actors are digitally de-aged on screen, but I simply cannot be on board with digitally resurrecting long-dead actors. Even if his family approved it, making James Dean the star of a movie he never agreed to be in is impossibly gross. STOP.”
So the only questions left are, will it go ahead? And who will pay for a ticket to the cinema if this is the controversy it has caused?