Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
In film and video, live action refers to works that are acted out by flesh-and-blood actors, as opposed to animation. Live action is the norm in film and video, and thus the term is usually superfluous. It is an important distinction, however, in situations where one might normally expect animation, as in a Disney movie, a video game, or when the work is adapted from a cartoon, such as the Flintstones, Josie and the Pussycats, or Wicked City movies, or The Tick television show.
The term is also used within the animation world to refer to non-cartoon characters. For example, in a movie such as Who Framed Roger Rabbit where humans and cartoons co-exist, "live action" characters are the "real" actors such as Bob Hoskins, as opposed to the animated "actors," such as Roger Rabbit himself.
In role-playing games, live-action refers to games in which the players physically act out their characters, as if in a theater production, as opposed to sitting around a table and simply describing the actions their characters take. See Live action role-playing game for more details.
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