Mr. Chroma-Key is Dead


The guy that made it possible for Weather Anchors to look better while guessing the forecast has died.

Petro Vlahos, a special-effects pioneer who developed the blue-screen and green-screen process that let weather anchors having dancing animations on the wall behind died earlier this month.

His death was announced by Ultimatte, the company that he and his son, Paul, founded in 1976.

“His inventions made a whole genre of film possible — a genre that seems to make more money than any other,” said Bill Taylor, the Oscar-winning visual-effects supervisor, speaking at an Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences event the day before Mr. Vlahos died. “He created the whole of composite photography as we know it.”