Publication by BgRem about creativity and design

How has background removal evolved over time?

The history of background removing

How it has started?

The history of background removing starts far away in the 19th century. People began to think about how to remove the background from images and videos. Georges Méliès, the French movie director is one of the founders of world cinematography, and the inventor of the first tricks in cinema. He was the first to apply one of the techniques of compositing in 1898 - a way of combining frames into one image. He used that technique to present the scene of a man removing his head. That was a real breakthrough in the cinema industry.

At the beginning of the 20th century, Edwin Porter used double exposure in his film “Great Train Robbery” to create a background in the train windows, which were covered with black canvas during filming.

Great train robbery

Another innovation in the world of special effects and background replacement were the effects in E. Schoedsack’s film "Doctor Cyclops". The technology that was used there is called “perspective combination”. First, they shot an excerpt that was supposed to be in the background, put it on the big screen, and shot the second scene.

Doctor Cyclops

The predecessor of a green screen was a blue screen – the technology that was applied in the 1940’s in the ‘Thief of Bagdad movie”. The idea of the such an effect came to mind to Larry Battler, who found out that the usage of a single color as a backdrop could help isolate the actors from the background. The choice of color was explained by the fact that it was different from human skin.

thief of Bagdad

Talking about colors, the yellow screen was used in Disney’s “Mary Poppins” film. This technique is based on lightning-up actors using sodium vapor lights on a narrow color spectrum that does not register on the red, green, or blue layers. 

Mary Poppins

Green screen in our sort of view appeared only in the second half of the 20th century. It was applied in the early 1970s by both American and British TV networks for weather forecasts. History of background removing timeline

What is chroma key?

Literally, the chroma key is a technology for combining two or more images or frames in one composition. With the help of a chromakey, you can place people or objects on an arbitrary background taken elsewhere.

Chroma key

A chromakey technology is used in a lot of action movies and science fiction films, to change the background and create unbelievable special effects. The chroma key effect got its name because the video production equipment looks at the chrominance data. A video switch replaces pixels that fall in a narrow pie-slice of the hue-saturation circle, centered on the green hue, with pixels from the background.

Can I remove a video’s background?

The world spins madly on, we live in an era of progress. People are coming up with more and more new technologies. And now we don't have to shoot a video on a green or blue background in order to apply a different background later. Modern programs and utilities can perform this in seconds in automatic mode.

How to remove the background from any video nowadays? It is easy – try BgRem!

  1. Upload the video to the service. 
  1. When the background is successfully removed, you can save the result with a transparent layer for further processing in other programs or add a new background image directly to the application you are using.
  1. Save the video and enjoy your result.

Background removal happens in seconds and efficiently. Artificial intelligence allows us nowadays to remove background without any effort while the filmmakers centuries ago had to equip the whole studios and invent new techniques to change the background and make a film more effective. Now everybody can take advantage of the background removing process with smart services like BgRem.