Film & Video Society Holds ‘CGI/FX Reel Wars’ Debates

The FVS “Reel Wars” Debate Rages (Left to Right): Arianna Williams, Nathan Ragland (Moderator), Cameron Franklin, James Hourigan, and Cameron Tudor.

From: Dennis Conway                                                                                    Date: April 4, 2019

Where would the movie industry be without films made with CGI (computer generated imagery) or FX (special effects)? And what are the best examples of the genre?  For answers, you’d have had to attend the Mass Media Film and Video Society’s “Reel Wars” debate on Wednesday, April 3, in which members and guests debated CGI movie issues for 90 minutes.  The event, moderated by FVS President Nathan Ragland, featured 4 participants and was won by the Fox Hounds (James Hourigan and Cameron Tudor) over the One Team (Arianna Williams and Cameron Franklin), by a score of 3 to 2.  This semester’s “Reel Wars” event was judged by FVS Faculty Advisor Dennis Conway, and students Amy Cash and Nathan Ragland, before the FVS members.  FVS Vice President James Hourigan created the debate questions.

The debate featured 5 questions, and 5 rounds. The questions were: 1. With today’s rapidly evolving technology, we can create some remarkably realistic CGI characters. Who or what is the most realistic CGI character? 2. Video Games have become the largest entertainment medium, even dwarfing the returns made from blockbusters. But do they surpass film in storytelling? Which Video Game has the best story to rival film? 3. CGI is great, but some consider practical effects to be superior. In all of film what is the greatest use of practical effects?  4. Film stars age and they also pass away. What do you think is the best use of CGI de-aging an actor, and / or bringing their likeness back after death?  5. Some films are made entirely in CGI.  What do you think is the single greatest CGI film ever created?

The Film and Video Society meets every first and third Wednesdays of the month, at 6 p,m. in the Mass Media building.  The next meeting, on April 17 will feature a Video Editing Workshop.  The group will also hold a 48-Hour Film Festival, starting Friday, April 12 at 6 p.m. in the Mass Media building.  At that time, student teams will be given a line of dialogue, a prop, and a character, which students must include in their video production.  Teams have 48 hours to write, shoot, and edit their piece, with no limits on the number of team members.  The groups will present their pieces on Sunday at 6 p.m., to win prizes.  At present, students may also contribute their own ideas for the story elements of line, prop, and character, by placing a paper note into the boxes placed at the “equipment cage” in the Mass Media building.

Please email FVS President Nathan Ragland at, if you have questions. Join us for a two-day scramble of fun and creativity!