UFO Hoax Video Still Dazzles


Another day, another crazy UFO sighting posted to YouTube. Only this time, the poster admits that it's a fake.

Visual effects specialist Aristomenis Tsirbas shared what the magic of CGI can do with the 39-second clip "UFO Over Santa Clarita," which he posted to YouTube last year.

In the video, a driver who appears to be cruising along a California desert road suddenly spots a bizarre object soaring across the sky, and is heard muttering, "Whoa."

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The driver then pulls the car over, and gets out to get a better shot of the object. It zips back, and is soon picked up by a mothership, which appears with a flash.

Only the whole thing is fake. As in, everything - the road, the beautiful sunset, and yes, the spacecrafts. Tsirbas, who worked on "Titanic" and "Hellboy," told Wired that he created the clip to show how easy faking a UFO sighting is in the days of CGI.

"The point of the video was to prove that CGI can look natural and convincing," he said. "Everybody assumes the background and car are real, and that the UFOs are probably fake, especially the over-the-top mothership at the end. The general reaction is disbelief, so I usually have to prove it by showing a wireframe of the entire shot to prove that nothing is real."


The champion of "photorealistic" CGI said that he and his team took four months to craft the brief clip, which is a YouTube hit. It wasn't until this week that he went public with the fact that it's all faked.