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Michael Mann Visualizes Cyberhacking in ‘Blackhat’

Blackhat director Michael Mann worked hard to depict cyberhacking as it really is and yet also create a visually compelling film.

“Watching people type is boring,” he tells Wired. “And I didn’t want to represent the inside of a chip as being a guy on a motorcycle on a bridge. I wanted to represent, as realistically as possible, the idea that a data packet is going in with an address that says, ‘I’m OK, let me through your firewall,’ but hidden within it is a tool that can open up a back door. The sequence goes inside the computer and uses the actual shape of a transistor: one piece of conductive metal that has a surplus of electrons, and one with no electrons. The one license we took is we made them be two different colors.”

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