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How Science Has Contributed To The Film And Television Industry And Its Impact On Society

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Table of contents

  2. Main research
  3. More uses of science in film
  4. Positives and negatives of science in film
  5. Conclusion


For decades’ people have been influenced by the entertainment industry. Movies and television has shaped millions of lives across the world. The entertainment industry is worth nearly $2 trillion. This figure demonstrates the influence of the industry. Computer science applies to almost all forms of the entertainment industry. You may not realize that the movies and television shows you watch are substantially reliant on science.

In my project I have researched, the scientific aspects of film production, computer science in the movie and television industry and its impact on society.

Main research

This application of computer science in film has many purposes, creating fight scenes, explosions, even people. The computer-generated special effects bring alive films such as Pirates of the Caribbean and Star Wars. Ron Fedkiw, an associate professor of computer science uses computation to make solids and fluids more realistic in films. Physically based simulation has become popular in the special effects industry. These technological tools can be used for sinking a ship in movies.

Fedkiw created special effects incomparable in their realism. He designs new algorithms that can rotate objects, create textures, create reflections or mimic collisions. Here, I used an article from the official Stanford news journal written by Dawn Levy A science writer for Stanford University. Levy graduated from Columbia University and has a degree in biology from UCLA and worked in the biotech industry. The article is also courtesy of Ron Fedkiw a professor in the Stanford University department of computer science and a researcher in computer graphics. (see reference A)

In summary, computer generated imagery uses computers to place creatures, backgrounds and more into movies. CGI ( Computer Generated Imagery) has even been used in multiple occasions to insert actors in film ,posthumous. examples of these actors are Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe, and Paul Walker who were artificially added to advertisements and films through CGI.

More uses of science in film

The soundtrack of a movie is significant in its story line and reception, creating suspense, energy and tension during key points. The music in films is often, played in a studio by musicians. It’s then recorded by computers so it can be modified using computer programming. This way the music fits the scene properly.

Every film requires a screenplay; it is the basis of every film. Screenwriters use many different computer programs that can format text into a screenplay.

Before computers, editors would spend hours looking through frames of film and cutting the film to edit it. Now editors use a computer to go through a movie frame by frame and can cut very precisely. Computer science has enhanced the quality of movies drastically.

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I used reference B to find out about the additional uses of science in the film industry. The author Brock Cooper attended Illinois Wesleyan University. He was a reporter for seven years before working in marketing and media relations.

Positives and negatives of science in film

Many believe technology’s greatest impact is new cameras that allow cinematographers to record in higher definition, letting viewers take in more of the amazing work in set design. Technology enabling movies that were not possible before.

Digital film means avoiding the huge cost of older film. It means production companies complete their movie keeping the entire project closer to budget. Using science in film is positive because in the end the film looks cleaner, the audience usually can’t tell when CGI has been used, and it’s a powerful tool filmmakers use to set atmosphere.

Science has also contributed to the preservation of film. Film will crumble and damage over time, Digital archives make it easy to backup and restore film. Without technology, it would be almost impossible for the industry to make the amount of films it does. The practicalities of digital film have largely improved the film industry. Resulting in the film industry being largely reliant on science and technology.

Negatively ,Its been found that people that frequently watch television were more likely to lack confidence in the scientific community, believing science is dangerous and that a career in science is undesirable.

Many people also find the excessive use of CGI in film takes away from overall quality, believing CGI defies the laws of physics and some go as far as believing It has gone from helping filmmakers to invading cinema with its implausible imagery.

I used reference C for the positives, this article is written by film director Charles Matthau. However, the Article is partner content so I reevaluated using much information form this source. I used reference D for the negatives this article has many people in agreement in the responses. it is personally biased but since I noted that it was people’s opinions it is a valid source.


Science and film has been intertwined from the beginning of cinema. The concept of Cinema emerged when scientists were looking for technological methods of studying animal movement. Many of the biggest and most financially successful films have science at their core including Spider-Man and Avatar. A Significant number of popular television shows are also immersed in science and technology including CSI, House and The Big Bang Theory.

Entertainment attributes largely to the public’s attitude and understanding of science as well as employing thousands of scientists. According to Alan Irwin the public develops their understanding of science from their everyday lives and experiences. Popular films have influenced people’s lives by shaping and reinforcing their ideas of science. Multiple high profile scientific organizations have embraced movies and television as ‘legitimate vehicles’ for science communication. Science in cinema includes the methods of science, the social interactions among scientists, laboratory equipment, science education, as well as science policy and science communication. Science in film has had a massive societal effect. Changing the public’s perception of science for us to understand its value,to enhance storytelling and educate us about humanity and the challenges we face in a 21st century society.

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How Science Has Contributed To The Film And Television Industry And Its Impact On Society. (2022, February 24). Edubirdie. Retrieved December 3, 2023, from
“How Science Has Contributed To The Film And Television Industry And Its Impact On Society.” Edubirdie, 24 Feb. 2022,
How Science Has Contributed To The Film And Television Industry And Its Impact On Society. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 3 Dec. 2023].
How Science Has Contributed To The Film And Television Industry And Its Impact On Society [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Feb 24 [cited 2023 Dec 3]. Available from:
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