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From the age of thirteen Ray Harryhausen knew his future lay in special effects. Drawing inspiration from his mentor Willis O'Brien, creator of King Kong, Ray took the art and skill of stop-motion animation one step further, weaving his magic on dinosaurs, aliens and mythological creatures alike. From early experiments with animating fairy tales in his father's garage to creating groundbreaking effects for blockbuster movies, Ray Harryhausen shares the fascinating story of his 'animated life'. The last great animator before the introduction of CGI, he takes us through the pleasures and pitfalls of sixty years dedicated to making movie magic. Learn how Raquel Welch was picked up by a flying dinosaur in One Million Years B.C., why the octopus in Mysterious Island had only six limbs, and what Medusa's blood was made from in Clash of the Titans. From the flying harpies in Jason and the Argonauts to battling skeletons in The 7th Voyage of Sinbad, Ray recounts the films' journeys from original concepts through to the critics' reviews. Anecdotal, insightful and honest, An Animated Life features hundreds of photos from Ray's personal archive. It explains the basics of special effects and stop-motion animation, what it was like to work with actors including Laurence Olivier, Maggie Smith and Lionel Jeffries, and how his creations were ultimately the real stars of the movies.
Aurum Press Ltd
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