Dr Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) is a brilliant medical engineer on her first shuttle mission, with veteran astronaut Matt Kowalsky (George Clooney). But on a seemingly routine spacewalk, disaster strikes. The shuttle is destroyed, leaving Stone and Kowalsky completely alone, tethered to nothing but each other and spiraling out into the blackness.
The deafening silence tells them they have lost any link to Earth and any chance for rescue. As fear turns to panic, every gulp of air eats away at what little oxygen is left. But the only way home may be to go further out into the terrifying expanse of space.
Did you know?
Alfonso Cuarón, cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki, and visual effects supervisor Tim Webber decided that they couldn't make Gravity as they wanted to by simply using traditional methods. So for the spacewalk scenes, says Webber, "We decided to shoot (the actors') faces and create everything else digitally. Which was quite a difficult decision." To do that, Lubezki reasoned, he would need to light the faces to match the all-digital environment they'd be put into. Whether the characters were floating gently, changing direction or tumbling in space, the facial light would have to be a perfect match for the Earth, sun and stars in the background. "That can break easily," explains Lubezki, "if the light is not moving at the speed that it has to move, if the position of the light is not right, if the contrast or density on the faces is wrong, et cetera." Lubezki suggested folding an LED screen into a box, putting the actor inside, and using the light from the screen to light the actor. That way, instead of moving either Bullock or Clooney in the middle of static lights, the projected image could move while they stayed still and safe. This "light box" became the key to the spacewalk scenes. But it was only a nine-foot cube, just big enough for one actor, not an actor and a camera crew. Read More