Disney is leading the charge when it comes to de-aging Hollywood legends. So far we've seen younger versions of Michael Douglas in Marvel's Ant-Man, Robert Downey Jr. in Captain America: Civil War, and Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia in Lucasfilm's Rogue One. We've even seen Peter Cushing resurrected from the grave in the first Star Wars anthology movie. Now, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 brings us a younger, fresher Kurt Russell, who looks like he stepped right out of the 80s and off a John Carpenter set. But while those previous de-aged performances were mostly done with CGI and motion capture, it turns out, Kurt's return to his golden age in Hollywood was actually done with mostly practical effects.
Yes, that's right. In the opening moments of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, we get to see 80s era Kurt Russell, back when he was in his prime. This continues not only
" target="_blank">Marvel but all of Disney's recent trend of giving their icons a digital facelift. But Kurt is still so flawless looking that only a little bit of CG was needed to restore his luster from three decades ago.
In Guardians of the Galaxy 2, Kurt Russell stars as Ego the Living Planet, who has long been revealed as Star-Lord's real dad. In the first scene of the movie, he is seen courting Peter Quill's mom, as the two fall in love. While promoting the movie at Disney's recent press junket for Guardians 2, Kurt Russell opened up and revealed some of the secrets behind the movie. This being one of the bigger ones. When it came to erasing the wrinkles on Kurt's face, CG was only used to blur the lines, so to speak. The actor explains.
"Before we went in there we assumed that it was gonna be all CGI. And [makeup artist Dennis Liddiard] said to James [Gunn] and the cinematographer [Henry Braham], 'Hey, I can young this guy down. I got some tricks in my bag. Would that be helpful?' And they said, 'Yeah, as much as you can. That would be great.' I was speaking to the gal last night who does the CGI. She said, 'What did you think of what we did?' And I said, 'I thought it was great. But I understand you didn't do a whole lot?' She said, 'No we didn't. We touched it up here and there.' He did a fantastic job. He does have a lot of tricks, not just makeup. Cosmetics I should say."
So far, no video has been released by Disney that takes fans behind the entire process. That probably won't be made more clear until the movie hits theaters, and fans get to see the facelift for themselves. But as Kurt Russell tells it, most of the work in getting him back to his Snake Plissken and Jack Burton heyday was done with make-up. Other examples of this in the MCU have relied on physical reference points, with the actor being present, but most of it was reworked on the computer using a mix of motion capture and CG.
Fans will get a chance to see this in-camera trick for themselves this Thursday, when Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 hits theaters nationwide for preview screenings before officially opening on Friday. So far, the critics have been more than kind to James Gunn's sequel. And it should prove to be one of the year's biggest hits.