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Old 06-13-2015, 05:36 AM
Mazryonh Mazryonh is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 281
Question Ways of making coloured muzzle flashes in films

I know that the chemicals to make coloured flames (and by extension coloured muzzle flashes) have been around for a long time, probably as long as fireworks making coloured lights have been around. The question is, how often have they been used to make coloured muzzle flashes in films?

I'm pretty sure that chemicals of that kind were used in old films like Akira Kurosawa's Ran, since that was made before CGI post-processing became mainstream (of course, this still leaves open the possibility of analog post-processing techniques, but with the number of visible muzzle flashes on screen for that movie that may not have been an economical or timely option). What about the original trilogy of Star Wars movies? The wiki states that the E-11 Blaster Rifles were actually blank-converted Sterling SMGs firing real blanks with the "blaster bolts" added into the film frames later, but were the red muzzle flashes added in later, or did they use special chemicals in the blanks to achieve that colour?

Can someone "in the biz" (as it were) tell me how much it would likely cost to get blanks loaded with those chemicals vs changing muzzle flash colours with computers? Just as an example, Ridley Scott's Prometheus used blanks for its firearms but changed them via digital manipulation, according to the wiki. Would it have been more expensive had they used special chemical blanks instead to get those blue muzzle flashes?
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