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Ray Harryhausen, Visual Effects Master, Dies Aged 92

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the rest-in-peace dept.

Movies 49

New submitter Diakoneo writes "According to the BBC, 'Visual effects master Ray Harryhausen, whose stop-motion wizardry graced such films as Jason and the Argonauts and Clash of the Titans, has died aged 92. The American animator made his models by hand and painstakingly shot them frame by frame to create some of the best-known battle sequences in cinema.' Some of my fondest cinematic memories from my youth are from Ray Harryhausen."

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Wait! (5, Funny)

He Who Has No Name (768306) | about a year ago | (#43659947)

If we keep repositioning his body while everyone is blinking, maybe nobody will be able to tell he's actually dead.

Re:Wait! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43660049)

So, you think you can just shoot your seed from your cock hole into my rancid asshole and be done with me, do you? Think again; I just shot out some of my feces... and it's covered in your cum! My asshole sure does love cum farts!

Re:Wait! (3, Insightful)

condition-label-red (657497) | about a year ago | (#43660477)

On one hand this is absolutely morbid...but he would have probably loved it!

Re:Wait! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43661493)

On one hand this is absolutely morbid...but he would have probably loved it!

It depends. Will this be happening at one of those gay necrophilia mortuaries in L.A. that Sam Kinison talked about? A stop motion ass-raping might not be his cup of tea.

Re:Wait! (4, Insightful)

hairyfeet (841228) | about a year ago | (#43661739)

Oh he'd have enjoyed the hell out of it! I remember seeing years ago a "masters of movie magic" about Harryhausen and Winston and you could tell by listening to their stories that they loved the hell out of their work, you got the impression they probably would have done it for free if they had to,because they just loved making the creatures come alive.

RIP Mr Harryhausen, I think I'll fire up some Golden Voyage Of Sinbad, I was lucky enough to see that at the drive in when i was a kid and his work still looks cool. I think I cheered for every monster, especially the statue with the swords, too awesome!

He fucked with Medusa (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43660073)

And his bitch ass got served...
Don't mess with Medusa.

Re:He fucked with Medusa (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43660149)

If messin' with Medusa results in living to age 92, and dying famous and beloved --- where's the line to get my bitch ass served likewise?

Re:He fucked with Medusa (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43660249)

I hear you like to get your bitch ass served with a big dick... fucking you in the ass. Fucking faggot.

He provided inspiration (2, Interesting)

Camembert (2891457) | about a year ago | (#43660099)

The man inspired so many young viewers when these classic movies came out, including a number of kids who later became prominent in the movie industry themselves.

Re: He provided inspiration (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43660263)

Was he the inspiration for the restaurant "Harryhausen's" in Monsters Inc.?

He will be missed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43660155)

That's too bad, I remember all those old classics, especially the Sinbad movies. Have a boxed set of most of them.

Re:He will be missed (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43663009)

That's too bad, I remember all those old classics, especially the Sinbad movies. Have a boxed set of most of them.

Shame he's a muzzie

Skeleton fights! (4, Informative)

Dr Herbert West (1357769) | about a year ago | (#43660211)

There's a great documentary about Harryhausen as well as some of the artists he inspired. It's on the Netflix for streaming, as I recall:

The Sci-Fi Boys [imdb.com]

R.I.P Ray, your work with skeleton fights in "Argonauts" opened my eyes to the world of animation and all things morbid! You will be missed.

Re:Skeleton fights! (4, Informative)

SternisheFan (2529412) | about a year ago | (#43660425)

He was inspired as a kid by the stop-motion animation in King Kong, and later got work helping on Mighty Joe Young. I found all these interviews with the great Ray Harryhausen on YouTube... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ctb9N5Umqec&list=PL301A89EF78E1A4BB [youtube.com]

Re:Skeleton fights! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43660429)

In case you have a jones for one of his movies, here [archive.org] is a link to "Twenty million miles to Earth", at the internet archive.

Re:Skeleton fights! (1)

Jonah Hex (651948) | about a year ago | (#43661227)

Another great (the definitive) Documentary on him is Ray Harryhausen: Special Effects Titan [imdb.com] . It has some of the original armature and foam pieces unearthed from his garage as well as lots of interviews with people in the industry and the man himself. Well worth the hour and a half run time. - HEX

Re:Skeleton fights! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43661425)

Yeah, the skeleton fight was great, but the giant bronze Talos was something else. I still remember how scared I was when that giant bronze head started to swivel. RIP.

So long, and thanks for all the fish! (1, Offtopic)

woboyle (1044168) | about a year ago | (#43660463)

RH was a force of nature, and we who grew up on his wizardry will miss him!

In his honor... (2)

Chris Mattern (191822) | about a year ago | (#43660641)

...I will battle a troop of animated skeletons. Now where did I put Diablo II...?

Re:In his honor... (3, Interesting)

iluvcapra (782887) | about a year ago | (#43660873)

You put the skeletons from Jason and the Argonauts up against the sword-fight with the skeleton pirates in Pirates of the Caribbean and some of it is almost shot-for-shot, it was a pretty strong inspiration.

Also: Bubo.

Visual effects beyond the grave!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43660645)

inb4 ghost Ray appears

Stop motion Owl (2)

Nidi62 (1525137) | about a year ago | (#43660737)

I always thought that owl was kind of creepy when I was younger, but when they made the crappy remake I found myself missing the owl. He certainly made some iconic and memorable animations.

Re:Stop motion Owl (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43661429)

I agree, the remake really seemed bland compared to the original. At least they SHOWED the owl but even then it was in the form of a rejection of the original art, which was, honestly, far superior to the modern product.

The new Clash just put me in mind of the new Tron, Deathrace 2000, or Total Recall. A whitewashed, lifeless cash-in with no redeeming qualities.

I'll really miss Harry... At least we have his films. :)

King Kong (4, Interesting)

Goondra (855859) | about a year ago | (#43661543)

We had one of the 3 armatures from King Kong in our closet for several years.
My brother, Jim Danforth, knew Ray Harryhausen and did similar puppet animation
in the '60, such as "When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth" and "The 7 Faces of Dr. Lao".
Harryhausen was a house hold word in our family.

In remembrance (2)

ridgecritter (934252) | about a year ago | (#43661821)

of Ray Harryhausen, I watched Jason and the Argonauts again this evening. I first saw it when I was about 20, and I've never been able to look at a skeleton quite the same way since. What a talent he had!

Will be missed (3, Interesting)

Forthan Red (820542) | about a year ago | (#43661825)

Sad news. I was fortunate enough to meet him back in 1981, and got his autograph. It was at an advance showing of the original Clash of the Titans, where he gave a presentation before the film. He brought some of the original figures used for Jason and the Argonauts, King Kong, The 7th Voyage of Sinbad, and other stop-motion classics. Despite all the computer perfection of today's CGI, it will never match the wonder I experienced when, as a kid, I first saw the battle of the skeleton warriors in Jason and the Argonauts.

Re:Will be missed (2)

Forthan Red (820542) | about a year ago | (#43661847)

Quick correction - it was a model from Mighty Joe Young, not King Kong. He hated working with a fur model, because you couldn't touch it without moving some of the fur. He never again created a fur-covered monster.

Stop motion done right (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43661889)

I remember being impressed by Clash of the Titans as a kid, despite the fact that it was stop-motion. That was 1981.

Jurassic park made people think CGI was the end-all be all.

These two films are both examples of $technique done right.

Stop-motion Jurassic park would have been like CGI Star Wars. Get it, Lucas?

Re:Stop motion done right (4, Interesting)

Rakarra (112805) | about a year ago | (#43663429)

Stop-motion Jurassic park would have been like CGI Star Wars. Get it, Lucas?

Jurassic Park was originally going to be stop-motion in wide shots (or really, go-motion like the walkers from Empire Strikes Back) and Phil Tippett was hired to oversee this. The results just weren't what Spielberg was hoping for, and then the CGI dinosaurs started to look amazing...

Farewell Ray, you change our world, thank-you. (2)

RandomStr (2116782) | about a year ago | (#43661955)

As someone who had the honor of meeting Ray, I say, he will be missed.

At the time of meeting him I was a nubie to the effects industry, one that he was instrumental in developing, yet he was as fascinated and inspired with our modern processes as we where by his. His insight, creative vision and pioneering sprite transcended time, and I value every word of advice that he bestowed upon me.

His works(seminal) will ensure that he continues to inspire, an immortal of our modern age.

I have to admit (5, Insightful)

CrazyBusError (530694) | about a year ago | (#43663507)

When I saw the tributes coming in, I was moved.

Then I was moved a little more.

And I was moved a little more still...

Clash of the generations (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43664257)

RIP Mr. Harryhausen

Thanks for all the countless hours you spent animating those figures so that kids like me could go "Wow".

Nowadays its done with CGI in render farms, augh.

Now get off my stop motion lawn!

This man was a genius (1)

Leafheart (1120885) | about a year ago | (#43664333)

I was reading the NYTimes article, and this part caught my attention:

The heart of his technique was a process he developed called Dynamation. It involved photographing a miniature — of a dinosaur, say — against a rear-projection screen through a partly masked pane of glass. The masked portion would then be re-exposed to insert foreground elements from the live footage. The effect was to make the creature appear to move in the midst of live action. It could now be seen walking behind a live tree, or be viewed in the middle distance over the shoulder of a live actor — effects difficult to achieve before.

That is brilliant!!!!! RIP Mr Ray. And thank you for everything

soon all scifi movies will look the same (1)

peter303 (12292) | about a year ago | (#43664559)

Since J. Abrams seems to be directing all the big ones. I wont be able to tell the difference between Star Trek and Star wars anymore.

Opening a sushi restaurant in Mostropolis (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43664915)

He's not dead, he's just been teleported to Monstropolis to open the hottest Asian-fusion-sushi restaurant in town.

Tim Burton, et al (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43666097)

owe this guy a huge debt artistically (corpse bride, nightmare) as well as Selick (James and the Giant Peach, Coraline)

and even South Park (although 2d cutout instead of 3d) and even a lot of current 3dcharacter animation is based on his work.

-I'm just sayin'

And let'snot forget (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43666319)

his work on Flesh Gordon - truly hysterical.

                mark "Oh, my hemmoroids, says the monster...."

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