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Is there free or open software to make lightsabers?


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Do you have Photoshop? Its a pain in he ass, but if you have an image editor, you can rotoscope each frame(after exporting each frame to an image) and then import it back and splice it in with the audio. I have done it in Virtual Dub by saving an avi as individual images, and then editing each frame in photoshop, then importing them back in at the same frame rate and reimporting the original sound. Its hard and takes a really long time, but if all you have is off the shelf stuff like an image editor and something like virtual dub, you can do it.

On another note, there are things like LSMaker:


Screenshot: http://lsmaker.uw.hu/images/lsmaker.jpg

I was never good at making it work, but give it a try.

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http://lsmaker.uw.hu/page.php?main=lsmaker.html#lssound for sounds.

As far as light saber renders, frame by frame is the only way to make them look proper. Thats why I was saying it takes so long and is so hard.

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3D Studio?

make a glowing beam (im sure there are tutorials) like a neon light, then animate it so it lines up with the video (which would be a background behind your beam)

maybe. . .  i havnt tried it myself. .  more interested in environmental lighting than special effect lighting.

first post ever! yay me! :)

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You don't need digital effects at all. In the making of the original Star Wars IV they used long triangular sticks that rotated. They put some 3M fluorescent tape on there, so when the camera captured the high-intensity light reflecting off them, they looked kind of cool.

Oh, ok. I do exaggerate a little... the 3M tape didn't work very well, so they rotascoped (painted in) frame-by-frame for the final version... And then in episodes V and VI they didn't even use the glow tape...

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