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Age progression is the process of modifying a photograph of a person to represent the effect of aging on their appearance. Digital image processing is the most common technique today, although sometimes artists' drawings are used. Age progression is most often used as a forensics tool by law enforcement. It can be used to show the likely current appearance of a missing person from a photograph many years old.
Age progression may also refer to several loosely related types of transformation, often shortened to AP, in which a character suddenly increases in age. The two main categories are child to adult transformation, and young adult into old age. Some overlap is possible; a child may become an adult, and then continue to old age.
Age progression in media
Age progression is an occasional theme in anime/manga, motion pictures, cartoons and comics, literature, and stage performances. One of the earliest mentions is the Athena origin legend, who leaped from Zeus's skull fully grown. The protagonist of the Vietnamese Giong legend grew up rapidly.
- A classic work where age progression is thwarted rather than accelerated, is Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray; at the end of the story, the protagonist undergoes AP after killing his likeness in a painting, which had previously preserved Gray's youthful appearance.
- In the book "Happy Birthday, Dear Amy" by Marilyn Kaye, a 13 year old girl grows into a 25 year old overnight.
Age progressions are a common theme in Japanese anime and manga. Many anime series feature girls transforming into often voluptuous women. They go through elaborate transformation sequences, in which their clothes are magically replaced with costumes, and their bodies are hidden by energy streamers. The transformation scene may be reused in each episode, emphasizing the characters' breasts and hips growing in a comical way. They may be shown blushing afterward. The earliest known case is the anime/manga series Marvelous Melmo by Osamu Tezuka. In each episode, the young girl Melmo has to help people by impersonating adult professions, like a stewardess or a policewoman. The plot was imitated in later series such as Minky Momo and Fancy Lala. Age progression is a popular theme in hentai manga. There are also many stories in which a character gets younger (age regression).
- Film in which boys physically become men:
- Body swap film in which young girls' souls end up in the bodies of older women. Films with girls are less likely to have physical transformations:
- One example of female age progression is Life In A Day or originally Antidote, a Canadian film about a baby rapidly aging because of a failed cell-accelerating experiment.
- The BBC television series "Honey, We're Killing the Kids" focused on showing parents the consequences of poor parenting using the Age progression technique to estimate how their children may look like as adults if they continue with their present life-style, dietary and exercise habits.