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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
This should generate a lively debate!

Let's set the scene, using the Millennium Falcon as our example. As we know, there are two primary filming miniatures. While they share the same overall shapes and proportions they are significantly different in terms of fine detail like kit-sourced components, markings and such.

In the context of their intended use, it's no big deal. The ship is generally in motion and differences are lost in motion blur and film grain.

We visit the retired models at a traveling exhibit. We can spend some time looking the models over, noting more obvious differences but generally we still have a limited time to soak it all in. We may note along the way that some fabricated detail ends at a certain level... it's past the point of where it would read in the final film so there's not much point in investing time to fill those blanks.

Since it's such a cool kit, let's throw our Fine Molds Falcon on the table. It is said to be based on the smaller of the two primary miniatures.

Personally, I break out four ways to build it.

1) Strict canon A. The subject as seen onscreen. The least demanding in terms of execution as less fine detail is resolved/revealed, while colors and textures become open to interpretation.

2) Strict canon B. Replicating the original miniature. Building with the intent of accurately depicting all detail present when examining the actual filming miniature, in-person and using reference photographs.

Here is where things get fuzzy...

3) Composite canon. A variation on "strict canon" but combining aspects of both the smaller and larger filming miniatures. The resulting model is therefore not accurate to either single model, but is a hybrid of the "best" aspects of each.

4) Enhanced canon. An extension of either (2) or (3). Based on the premise that the display model may be subject to closer and longer scrutiny, additional detail is added to "fill in the blanks" to better represent a real-world subject. This can be adding screens to vents, or adding a finer layer of greeblies to select locations as a "reward" to the discerning observer.

Working backwards, detail added in (4) would blend into surroundings if photographed to represent (1).

A similar scenario comes into play with, say, the Seaview (multiple miniatures used in production,) the TOS Enterprise (with detail present on the miniature that barely read on film such as penciled-in grid markings and subtle weathering,) and the TV Jupiter 2.

I concede that anything other than (2) is technically inaccurate. What are your thoughts on "composite canon" and enhanced canon?"

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I think it really depends on the subject (model) in question - the PL refit for example - many try to build the interiors - not as seen on the filming miniature, but according to full scale sets or even inaccurate layouts (Mr. Scott's Guide) - then there are the partial miniatures - the airlock - the photon area.... and then the variations from film to film (even on the larger studio model, the falcon's forward landing gear boxes were added in Empire).

Personally, I think there are so many inconsistencies between multiple miniatures and partial miniatures and sets, that you (as you suggest) either would replicate the closest miniature or choose to do the composite - really only two choices. Discussions of such simply need to clarify the context so you don't get uber-nit-picky people like myself :wave: saying "HOLD ON! YOU ARE OFF BY .0538mm!!!!!"

My opinion, anyway. I want my refit looking EXACTLY (see marc111 to get an idea) like the 8 ft as seen 1979....EXAAAACTLY!!!!! (as in a screencap from deep space just prior to warp)....... My fine molds falcon - which I am also obsessing about - I want it to look EXACTLY like it does in space leaving Bespin. (see Dana's to get an idea)

Apart from the plethora of models I did when I was a kid, these two are the last I will ever do - and I will be spending quite a few years doing them - to me, the holy grails of film-based modeling!

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Well, I dunno if it's a debate so much as a discussion of intent, or something. :)

I'll throw another monkeywrench into the soup.

I think 'enhanced canon' should be an entirely different issue, to wit: Building the model as if it was just like any 'mainstream' model, which is a recreation of a real vehicle.

In gross detail it should look like what we see on screen. That means just as you don't put windshield wipers on the driver's periscope on a Sherman Tank, you don't mount 1/350 point defense weapon systems on your NCC 1701-A

in fine detail it should all serve the reality. pipes should go somewhere. wear on paint should be in logical places. That sort of thing.

I'd like to see someone make up a kit just like an actual filming model, with uneven detail, sloppy paint, barely hidden mounting points...I recall looking at the ESB Snow Speeder model back at the 1984 Worldcon in L.A. and man, that sucker was CRAP. Pilots not even EXISTING below the edge of the canopy, the laser cannons were uneven...yeesh. But what mattered was how it looked on film and of course we all know how cool that was.

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It is of course up to the builder, however as previously mentioned there are limits for "good taste". For example building the refit with spinning lights on the flux intakes is over the top IMHO. On the other hand I am building a large scale refit and plan to add detailed docking ports that will include the little lights around the port that we see in the close up shots as well as the door markings. This is not on the 8 foot filming miniature, however, I think it may have been if they had 2400 dpi desktop printers in 1979.

So I think that cannon could be considered a hybrid between what we see on the model and the intent that is ultimately conveyed on screen with special effects.
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