Ray Harryhausen: 1920-2013

The pioneering stop motion animator was 92.

by | May 7, 2013 | Comments

Ray Harryhausen, the pioneering special effects supervisor whose stop motion animation innovations were important antecedents to modern special effects wizardry, died in London May 7. He was 92.

Harryhausen’s work on Mighty Joe Young (1949) earned the film an Oscar for Best Visual Effects. He’s probably best known for crafting an army of animated skeletons in Jason and the Argonauts (1963) and for the mythological creatures in Clash of the Titans (1981).

Born in Los Angeles, Harryhausen was inspired to work on stop motion short films after obsessively watching King Kong. He made his own animated shorts before being hired to work on character models for Mighty Joe Young, which was directed by King Kong co-director Ernest B. Schoedsack. His next film, The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms (1953), featured a giant prehistoric reptile wreaking havoc on the coast of North America. For The 7th Voyage of Sinbad, Harryhausen spent 11 months working on the various mythological beasts (some of which would be reworked in Clash of the Titans). He worked less frequently from the late 1960s to the early 1970s, before producing and crafting the visual effects for Clash of the Titans in 1981, which would be his last feature.

Harryhausen was awarded the Gordon E. Sawyer Award for Technical Achievement by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 1992. Steven Spielberg, James Cameron, Peter Jackson, and Tim Burton have all cited Harryhausen as an influence on their work.

For Ray Harryhausen’s complete filmography on RT, click here.

Tag Cloud

Pirates BBC America crime thriller E! GIFs Awards comiccon Trailer Esquire diversity Nominations Syfy PaleyFest Toys adventure dramedy OWN Premiere Dates Disney Channel USA 24 frames Reality cops Teen TLC serial killer Valentine's Day Countdown Biopics Watching Series Rock HBO Podcast Star Trek thriller APB Martial Arts NYCC TIFF war ABC Family harry potter IFC Interview ITV Character Guide Nat Geo Comedy discovery Kids & Family SundanceTV Certified Fresh Universal crime TCA Video Games YA Marvel Lifetime The CW Winter TV Action Red Carpet science fiction Masterpiece Hulu Comedy Central psycho BBC Tumblr police drama 2015 Starz technology biography TCA 2017 Food Network Spring TV PBS Star Wars composers vampires TruTV Infographic Superheroes MTV Ellie Kemper sports 007 Emmys Paramount transformers Grammys based on movie Thanksgiving Polls and Games MSNBC Extras El Rey Reality Competition Mindy Kaling ESPN SDCC 2016 politics TBS VICE Writers Guild of America Holidays Marathons NBC DC Universe Pop Box Office Nickelodeon Best and Worst CBS All Access Cosplay Mary Tyler Moore Cartoon Network boxoffice Rom-Com Amazon RT History Musicals First Look GoT Crackle Photos Year in Review Logo Lionsgate Sneak Peek Comic Book DirecTV CBS Showtime sitcom Opinion Music docudrama crime drama binge American Society of Cinematographers what to watch Horror LGBTQ CNN singing competition Oscars Fox News Adult Swim Sci-Fi Country Animation Winners FX Warner Bros. historical drama AMC Election E3 Rocky Trivia Netflix CMT A&E travel GLAAD FOX FXX TCM Mystery Dark Horse Comics Tomatazos social media talk show TV Land zombie TNT ABC romance Drama DC Comics History Sundance Schedule 45 BET Set visit TV Fall TV cats political drama VH1 cinemax 2017 period drama Summer X-Men Freeform Disney President supernatural The Arrangement Fantasy Musical cooking Ghostbusters Bravo WGN Super Bowl aliens Calendar Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt