Where Did the Filming of AVATAR Take Place?

Cameron filming Curious about the filming location of AVATAR and how the overall filming of AVATAR took place? Here's a closer look at the filming of AVATAR and how they used both live-action and computer-generated sequences to create the overall filming location of AVATAR.

Guest post by Zownder

The beautiful scenery and awesome effects of AVATAR can just blow you away. Who wouldn't want to visit these breathtaking places for themselves and see where their favorite actors stood? How do you tell if the locations in AVATAR are real places that you could actually visit or computer animated? It can be a bit tough, especially since the film was created to be a unique hybrid of both actual locations and computer-generated scenes. According to Cameron himself, the filming of AVATAR is actually composed of only 40 percent live elements and locations and the rest is computer-generated. Fans of AVATAR that want to visit the areas that were actually done on location in Wellington, New Zealand as this was the actual filming location of AVATAR.

The remaining areas of the film were done with animation and motion-capture photography in Los Angeles, California at the Hughes Aircraft stage. Although the overall filming of AVATAR took only 31 days for the motion-capture photography and another 31 days for the live-action scenes, don't think that this was a small undertaking for this brilliant movie. Actually more than one-thousand people worked on the overall production of the movie and helping to create the beautiful filming locations of AVATAR that we all love.

Of course, the virtual camera system that Cameron used to create the unique looks of AVATAR helped to create this new and wonderful mix of augmented reality. This new technology allowed the virtual actors to be in the real-time filming of the movie. This also helped Cameron to instantly adjust the different virtual scenes, just like he was actually shooting in a real place, in real time. By using this unique method of filming for AVATAR, the director was able to use both the real filming locations of AVATAR and these computer-generated locales together at the same time to give AVATAR its unique look.

Using this technique, Cameron says that he was able to film and edit AVATAR just like he was playing a game. He could use this augmented reality to instantly change his perspective of the film, fly around, stop, edit, or even turn the whole film into a miniature scale and look at the virtual world from there. One of the best things with this new technique used in the filming of AVATAR is that everything can be seen at once, instead of using old-school computer-generated techniques where the director could not see the complete film or scene until it was completed. This new process cuts down on the overall editing time as the director can see all of the live-action and computer-generated locations at the very same time.

So for those that want to see some of those beautiful filming locations of AVATAR, a trip to New Zealand is your best shot. Or better yet, buy the movie on DVD and you'll be transported there virtually in no time.

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