Published at: June 30, 2010, 5:22 p.m. CST by headgeek
Hey folks, Harry here... celebrating the 90th year of the lord of stop motion and fantasy film making... I'm talking about, of course, Ray Harryhausen. For those of us that grew up in the 50's, 60's, 70's... slightly before STAR WARS and long long long before Dennis Muren put Go-Motion in the box for JURASSIC PARK... there was Ray Harryhausen.
Ray is easily one of the single most beloved figures in the behind the scenes arts. While primarily an effects master, Ray's sense of wonder, personality, design and imagination was so clearly outputted to the screen that his films and him in particular... are cherished as though they were the beating heart of Jimmy Stewart himself. I've had the honor of getting to spend some really great quality time with Ray over my lifetime, and he's like an additional grandfather to me. Not to mention one of the chief founders of my imagination. His creatures live in my brain - and I love them there.
My curiosity about how he did what he did, gave me the passion to pursue finding out more about film in general. How do you make a toy live? That's what I always gathered, and nobody, but nobody's toys moved like Harryhausen's.
But the greatest thing that I can say about Ray Harryhausen is that he is the single nicest man I have ever met in my life. Gracious and an absolutely lovely human being. Now, I thought about putting up a bunch of his trailers, but this person cut together images of every creature that Ray brought to life - and set them to what else, but the magic of Tito Puente's MON TI. (Hey, don't knock it, watch how awesome that drum thumping is to the skeleton fight in Jason!)