The Dinosaur Films of Ray Harryhausen

Features, Early 16mm Experiments and Unrealized Projects

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About the Book

Ray Harryhausen’s animated creatures sparkled with predatory alertness and subtle quirks of behavior that stamped each with a distinct and memorable personality. His films are famous for being among the very best of the genre.
The first chapter of this book chronicles Harryhausen’s formative years and work on numerous 16mm experiments, beginning with his viewing of King Kong in 1933. The next four chapters cover his four feature-length dinosaur films, The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms, The Animal World, One Million Years B.C. and The Valley of Gwangi, providing extensive information about all aspects of the staging of their stop-motion content and many additional facets of the overall production process. The paleontological accuracy of his saurians from a modern perspective is also examined. A chapter on his work and experiences in the 1970s and beyond discusses potential dinosaur projects, as well as The Golden Voyage of Sinbad.

About the Author(s)

Roy P. Webber has written articles for Horror Biz and SPFX magazines. He lives in Escanaba, Michigan.

Bibliographic Details

Roy P. Webber
Forewords by Jim Aupperle ; and Bill Maylone
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 240
Bibliographic Info: 171 photos, filmography, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2012 [2004]
pISBN: 978-0-7864-6936-9
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      vii

Foreword by Jim Aupperle      xi

Foreword by Bill Maylone      xii

Preface      1

1. Early Experiences, Experiments and Evolution      5

2. The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms      45

3. The Animal World      87

4. One Million Years B.C.      111

5. The Valley of Gwangi      152

6. The 1970s and Beyond      192

Ray Harryhausen Dinosaur Filmography      209

Casts and Credits      211

Bibliography      215

Index      219

Book Reviews & Awards

“nicely illustrated…a core addition to professional and academic library Cinematic Studies and Film History reference collections”—Midwest Book Review; “Webber is the ideal man to write this book, his research is first class and he has the ability as a writer to carry it off. Moreover, he has the essential appreciation for Ray’s work. A well written tribute to one of 20th century cinema’s true innovators and story-tellers”—Destructive Music;“comprehensive”—Searchfor dinosaurs.com; “great reference work…interesting”—PalArch; “an exhaustive survey”—Mag.awn.com; “very detailed, well researched…beautifully illustrated…highly recommended…clear and easy to read”—Creaturescape; “revealing”—Timesdaily.com; “invaluable…fascinating…profusely illustrated”—Omnivore Ink.