Use of Computers in Movies

By Brock Cooper

Updated September 22, 2017

Computers are an important part of contemporary movie making.
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Computers have infiltrated almost every part of our lives, and the business of making movies is no exception. Movies cost and make millions of dollars; from the largest blockbuster to the smallest independent film computers are used in various ways during development, pre-production, production and post-production. Computers have become integral to the timely creation movies.

Special Effects

There is an entire division of special effects called computer generated imagery (CGI) that uses computers to place creatures, backgrounds and more into movies that cannot be created in real life. Computers are also used to record and capture the motion of the actors for computer graphics to be added later in post-production.


The soundtrack of a movie helps create suspense, energy and tension during key points. The music is often created in a studio by real musicians and orchestras and recorded by computers so it can be modified and fine-tuned using computer programming. This way the music is the perfect fit for the required scene.


The days of writing the screenplay for a movie on a typewriter are over, and most screenwriters today use a variety of computer programs that will automatically format text into a screenplay. This saves the screenwriter substantial time by not having to press space, tab and other buttons over and over again for more than 100 pages of movie script.


In the days before computers, editors would spend hours looking through frames of film and literally cutting the film to edit it. This is how the phrase "on the cutting room floor" came about. Modern editors use a computer to go through a movie frame by frame and scene by scene and can cut and move very precisely with the click of a mouse.