Little Shop of Horrors
The Care and Feeding of Audrey II
Article by Jody Duncan
For someone with Lyle Conway's background, Little Shop of Horrors was a dream come true — and a nightmare. Enlisted by director Frank Oz to design and create a believable plant character that could hold its own in a multimillion dollar musical comedy, Conway and a crew of forty animatronics specialists rose to the challenge by producing six fully-articulated versions of Audrey II ranging in size from four-and-a-half inches to twelve-and-a-half feet — and then taught the largest three how to speak and sing.
The Gate
A Question of Perspective
Article by Adam Eisenberg
Seeking major league effects on a minor league budget, producer John Kemeny and director Tibor Takacs turned to effects designer Randall William Cook for their supernatural thriller The Gate. Working with a hand-picked team of professionals, Cook orchestrated a wide range of mystifying effects — including a giant stop-motion demon and a swarm of devilish minions rendered tiny by some ingenious illusory techniques seldom employed in recent years.
The Golden Child
Of Daggers and Demons
Article by Paul Mandelll
For Industrial Light & Magic, The Golden Child was business as usual — winged demons, slithering snake women, even dancing Pepsi cans. But merging these fantasy elements into a gritty urban street comedy starring Eddie Murphy was a major stylistic challenge. Rising to the occasion was a team of software engineers and puppet animators who managed to blur the line between real and unreal by employing a prototype field motion control system to convincingly incorporate stop-motion figures into hand-held action scenes.
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