Re: New Casting and Story Rumors re: EPISODE VII It varied. On the one hand the Tatooine sets all had something real to match to, which in this case was the location where they shot the moisture farm' courtyard. But cut to the Death Star and it's clearly all wobbly painted plywood sets. The Echo Base set was very well done IMO and a vast improvement over the hanger from ANH with was quite obviously 90% cardboard cutouts, mirrors and black cloth. But then Cloud City is back to looking very fake and closed in with the bright, monotone pallet and curving corridors. The Death Star set in RotJ was a bit of an improvement, though I feel only because they took a queue from the carbonite chamber set form 'Empire' by keeping it mostly in shadow with some coloured light highlights. Basically it all depends on how it's shot, not whether they used a CG city scape in the background or mat painted in extra troopers in the medal ceremony. I *think* what made the PT sets look so bland was that they were lit to be optimal for the compositing process, but I'm far from an expert on that. What's often a bit of a give away that an exterior scene is being shot on a stage aside from the lighting, is that they often forget to simulate the kind of subtle breeze you get outside. It's not something you may consciously notice, but your brain will still register it as an eerie stillness and thus label it as unnatural looking. Add to that the flat lighting and the actors not getting their eyelines straight and the end result may as well have been shot on location in the uncanny valley.