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Ray Harryhausen

Biography

Visible effects artist and author who created a fresh type of stop-motion magic size animation called “Dynamation.” He was known for such films as “The 7th Voyage of Sinbad” from 1958 and “Jason as well as the Argonauts from 1963. He was influenced to go after his film profession after viewing “Ruler Kong” in 1933. He produced animated short movies during the Globe War II period that complete the advancement and usage of armed service equipment. He offered as associate animator within the 1949 film, “Mighty Joe Adolescent,” operating alongside his coach, the famed Willis O’Brien; the film received the Academy Award for unique results. He was of German ancestry, created to Martha L. and Frederick W. Harryhausen. He was wedded to Diana Livingstone Bruce from 1963 until his loss of life in 2013. His last film was “Clash from the Titans” from 1981, starring Laurence Olivier.

Quick Facts


Full Name Ray Harryhausen
Date Of Birth June 29, 1920
Died May 7, 2013, London, United Kingdom
Place Of Birth Los Angeles, CA
Height 1.85 m
Profession Actor, Film director, Film producer, Cinematographer, Animator, Screenwriter, Visual Effects Artist
Education Los Angeles City College, University of Southern California
Nationality American
Spouse Diana Livingstone Bruce
Children Vanessa Harryhausen
Parents Frederick W. Harryhausen, Martha L. Harryhausen
Awards Gordon E. Sawyer Award, ADG's Outstanding Contribution to Cinematic Imagery Award, BAFTA Special Award (Film)
Star Sign Cancer

  • Facts
  • Filmography
  • Awards
  • Salaries
  • Quotes
  • Trademarks
  • Pictures

#Fact
1Inducted into the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame in 2005.
2He was awarded a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6840 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California on June 10, 2003.
3Ray Harryhausen passed away on May 7, 2013, less than two months away from what would have been his 93rd birthday on June 29th.
4George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, James Cameron and Peter Jackson all hail his film work as indispensable foundations for their own.
5Has donated his models and artwork to the Bradford Museum of Media.
6In Corpse Bride (2005), the use of stop-motion animation reaches new heights, and as a tribute to him, the grand piano that appears in it has a gold name plate with "Harryhausen" engraved on it.
7He developed the technique of rear and front projecting footage one frame at time while animating to do stop-motion on a budget. This technique which he named Dynamation is still used by stop-motion animators today.
8He often talked to Bernard Herrmann about doing a film in which Herrmann would have written pieces of music and Harryhausen would have designed animation sequences to go with them, a la Fantasia (1940).
9His wife, Diana Livingstone Bruce, was a descendant of Scottish explorer David Livingstone. Of the marriage, Ray Bradbury--a friend for more than 50 years--commented, "He found just the right woman at just the right time, and it worked out terrifically".
10Another unmade project of his was "Elementals", about a colony of humanoid bat-creatures which attack Paris. All that remains of the project is several conceptual drawings and some test footage of one of the creatures snatching up and carrying off a hapless victim (played by Harryhausen himself).
11The restaurant in Monsters, Inc. (2001) is named after him.
12Unrealized projects for which test footage was shot include H.G. Wells' The War of the Worlds (1953) and The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (1988).
13He regards Jason and the Argonauts (1963) as his best film.
14Because of his unusual last name, some sources have incorrectly listed his name as "Ray Harry Hausen" and even just "Harry Hausen".
15As a teenager in this native Los Angeles, Harryhausen joined a science fiction club. It was there that he met two men who would become lifelong friends, Ray Bradbury and Forrest J. Ackerman.


Visual Effects

Visual Effects

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Clash of the Titans1981creator of special visual effects
Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger1977creator of special visual effects
The Golden Voyage of Sinbad1973creator of special visual effects
The Valley of Gwangi1969creator of visual effects
One Million Years B.C.1966special visual effects creator
First Men in the Moon1964creator of special visual effects
Jason and the Argonauts1963creator of special visual effects
Mysterious Island1961special visual effects creator
The 3 Worlds of Gulliver1960special visual effects creator
The 7th Voyage of Sinbad1958special visual effects creator
20 Million Miles to Earth1957technical effects created by
Earth vs. the Flying Saucers1956technical effects created by
The Animal World1956Documentary effects technician
It Came from Beneath the Sea1955visual effects - uncredited
The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms1953technical effects created by
Mighty Joe Young1949technician - uncredited
Tulips Shall Grow1942Short chief animator - uncredited

Producer

Producer

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Ray Harryhausen Presents: The Pit and the Pendulum2007Short executive producer
Ray Harryhausen: The Early Years Collection2005Video documentary executive producer
The Story of 'The Tortoise & the Hare'2002Short producer
Clash of the Titans1981producer
Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger1977producer
The Golden Voyage of Sinbad1973producer
The Valley of Gwangi1969associate producer
First Men in the Moon1964associate producer
Jason and the Argonauts1963associate producer
The 7th Voyage of Sinbad1958associate producer - uncredited
The Story of King Midas1953Short producer
The Story of 'Rapunzel'1951Short producer
The Story of 'Hansel and Gretel'1951TV Short producer
The Story of 'Little Red Riding Hood'1949Short producer
The Storybook Review1946Short producer - uncredited
Guadalcanal1943Short producer - as Raymond Harryhausen
How to Bridge a Gorge1942Short producer - uncredited

Director

Director

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Ray Harryhausen: The Early Years Collection2005Video documentary
The Story of 'The Tortoise & the Hare'2002Short
The Story of King Midas1953Short uncredited
The Story of 'Rapunzel'1951Short
The Story of 'Hansel and Gretel'1951TV Short
The Story of 'Little Red Riding Hood'1949Short uncredited
The Storybook Review1946Short uncredited
Guadalcanal1943Short as Raymond Harryhausen
How to Bridge a Gorge1942Short uncredited

Actor

Actor

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Burke and Hare2010Distinguished Doctor
The Boneyard Collection2008
Comic Book: The Movie2004VideoRay Harryhausen
Elf2003Polar Bear Cub (voice)
Mighty Joe Young1998Gentleman at Party
Beverly Hills Cop III1994Bar Patron
Spies Like Us1985Dr. Marston
20 Million Miles to Earth1957Man Feeding Elephant (uncredited)

Animation Department

Animation Department

TitleYearStatusCharacter
The Story of 'The Tortoise & the Hare'2002Short animator
Earth vs. the Flying Saucers1956special photographic and animation effects - uncredited
The Story of 'Little Red Riding Hood'1949Short animator
The Storybook Review1946Short animator
Guadalcanal1943Short animator - as Raymond Harryhausen
How to Bridge a Gorge1942Short animator - as Raymond Harryhausen

Writer

Writer

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger1977story
The Golden Voyage of Sinbad1973story
The 7th Voyage of Sinbad1958story - uncredited

Cinematographer

Cinematographer

TitleYearStatusCharacter
The Story of 'Little Red Riding Hood'1949Short as Jerome Wray, photography
Guadalcanal1943Short as Raymond Harryhausen
How to Bridge a Gorge1942Short as Raymond Harryhausen, photographed by

Special Effects

Special Effects

TitleYearStatusCharacter
It Came from Beneath the Sea1955technical effects creator
The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms1953animation effects
Mighty Joe Young1949first technician

Miscellaneous

Miscellaneous

TitleYearStatusCharacter
The Sky Is Falling: Making 'The War of the Worlds'2005Video documentary short images courtesy of
The Puppetoon Movie1987Puppetoon creative artist: United States
The 27th Day1957flying saucer effects - uncredited

Thanks

Thanks

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Conquest of Area 532017dedicatee post-production
Three Wasps in a Serpent's Nestgrateful thanks announced
ABCs of Superheroes2015Jens thanks
The Hallow2015in memory of
Edición Especial Coleccionista2013-2014TV Series in memory of - 2 episodes
Sinbad: The Fifth Voyage2014very special thanks
My Last2014Short thanks: inspiration
Pacific Rim2013dedicatee
Daisy Derkins, Dogsitter of the Damned2013special thanks
Unsung Maestros: A Directors Tribute2007Video documentary short special thanks
The Sci-Fi Boys2006Documentary special thanks
The Sky Is Falling: Making 'The War of the Worlds'2005Video documentary short special thanks
RKO Production 601: The Making of 'Kong, the Eighth Wonder of the World'2005Video documentary special thanks
I'm King Kong!: The Exploits of Merian C. Cooper2005Documentary acknowledgment: still photographs provided by
Inside the Federation2004Video documentary short special thanks
Hollywood Stuntmakers1999TV Series special thanks - 2 episodes
The Harryhausen Chronicles1998TV Movie documentary acknowledgment: still photographs provided by / grateful acknowledgment
Flesh and Blood: The Hammer Heritage of Horror1994TV Movie documentary special thanks
Dinosaur Island1994special thanks
Music for the Movies: Bernard Herrmann1992Documentary special thanks

Self

Self

TitleYearStatusCharacter
100 Years of Horror1996TV Series documentaryHimself - Special Effects Designer
Jason and the Argonauts: An Interview with Ray Harryhausen1995Video documentary shortHimself
Hollywood Goes Ape!1994DocumentaryHimself
Flesh and Blood: The Hammer Heritage of Horror1994TV Movie documentaryHimself
Movie Magic1994TV Series documentaryHimself
Dinosaur Movies1993Video documentaryHimself
The Famous Monsters 1993 World Convention Souvenir Video1993Video documentary
The 64th Annual Academy Awards1992TV SpecialHimself - Winner: Gordon E. Sawyer Award
Amazing Worlds of Science Fiction and Fantasy1991VideoHimself
Hollywood the Golden Years: The RKO Story1987TV Series documentaryHimself
Aliens, Dragons, Monsters and Me1986DocumentaryHimself
The Fantasy Film Worlds of George Pal1985DocumentaryHimself
The Moviemakers1985TV SeriesHimself
Man, Myth and Titans1981TV Movie documentaryHimself
Clapper Board1981TV SeriesHimself
Cinema1973TV Series documentaryHimself
Into the Dark: Exploring the Horror FilmDocumentary post-productionHimself
Piercing the Veil of Time the Life and Art of Charles R. KnightDocumentary post-productionHimself
The AckerMonster Chronicles!2012DocumentaryHimself
MENTALLUSIONS: Radical Eclectic Films of Benjamin Meade2012Himself
Ray Harryhausen: Special Effects Titan2011DocumentaryHimself - Filmmaker
9th Annual Visual Effects Society Awards2011TV SpecialHimself
Fantastic Talks2008DocumentaryHimself
King Kong 75th Anniversary Tribute2008Video documentary shortHimself
El último truco2008DocumentaryHimself
Ray Harryhausen Interviews2008Video documentary shortHimself
Her Morbid Desires2008VideoHimself
Masters of Magic: The World of Chandu2008Video documentary shortHimself
Behind the Tunes: Once Upon a Looney Tune2007Video documentary shortHimself
Famous Monster: Forrest J Ackerman2007DocumentaryHimself
Gumby Dharma2006Documentary
Space Top 10 Countdown2006TV SeriesHimself
The Sci-Fi Boys2006DocumentaryHimself
The 100 Greatest Family Films2005TV Movie documentaryHimself
Film '722005TV SeriesHimself
Mighty Joe Young: A Conversation with Ray Harryhausen and the Chiodo Brothers2005Video documentary shortHimself
Mighty Joe Young: Ray Harryhausen and Mighty Joe Young2005Video documentary shortHimself
The Sky Is Falling: Making 'The War of the Worlds'2005Video documentary shortHimself
RKO Production 601: The Making of 'Kong, the Eighth Wonder of the World'2005Video documentaryHimself
T-Rex: A Dinosaur in Hollywood2005TV Movie documentaryHimself
Animal Icons2005TV Series documentaryHimself
I'm King Kong!: The Exploits of Merian C. Cooper2005DocumentaryHimself - Interviewee
Ray Harryhausen: The Early Years Collection2005Video documentaryHimself
2nd Annual Spaceys2004TV SpecialHimself
History Detectives2004TV Series documentaryHimself
Inside the Federation2004Video documentary shortHimself
A Conversation with Ray Harryhausen2003Documentary shortHimself
Breakfast2003TV SeriesHimself
An Unfathomable Friendship2003Video documentary shortHimself
Return to the Valley2003Video documentary shortHimself - Special Effects Creator
The Rhedosaurus and the Rollercoaster: The Making of 'Beast'2003Video documentary shortHimself - Special Effects Creator
Resurrecting Dinosaurs: An Interview with Ray HarryHausen2002Video documentary short
Omnibus2000TV Series documentaryHimself
Ray Harryhausen: Working with Dinosaurs1999TV SpecialHimself
Hollywood Stuntmakers1999TV SeriesHimself
From Star Wars to Star Wars: The Story of Industrial Light & Magic1999TV Movie documentaryHimself
Attack of the 50 Foot Monster Mania1999TV Movie documentaryHimself
The Harryhausen Chronicles1998TV Movie documentaryHimself
Masters of Fantasy1996TV Series documentary
Lights, Camera, Action!: A Century of the Cinema1996TV Mini-Series documentaryHimself

Archive Footage

Archive Footage

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Pinewood: 80 Years of Movie Magic2015TV Movie documentaryHimself (uncredited)
Troldspejlet1999-2014TV SeriesHimself
The 86th Annual Academy Awards2014TV SpecialHimself - Visual Effects (In Memoriam)
Cinema 32013TV SeriesHimself
Días de cine2013TV SeriesHimself
The People vs. George Lucas2010DocumentaryHimself
Video on Trial2006TV SeriesHimself

Won awards

Won awards

YearAwardCeremonyNominationMovieAward shared with
2011OFTA Film Hall of FameOnline Film & Television AssociationBehind the ScenesVisual Effects
2011Lifetime Achievement AwardVisual Effects Society Awards
2008Contribution to Cinematic Imagery AwardArt Directors Guild
2007Lifetime MembershipVisual Effects Society Awards
2006George Pal Memorial AwardAcademy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USA

The legendary filmmaker behind such fantasy film classics as Jason and the Argonauts

2004Inspiration AwardEmpire Awards, UK
2003AnnieAnnie AwardsOutstanding Achievement in an Animated Short SubjectThe Story of 'The Tortoise & the Hare' (2002)
2003Star on the Walk of FameWalk of FameMotion PictureOn 10 June 2003. At 6840 Hollywood Boulevard.
1998Honorary MembershipVisual Effects Society Awards
1995Time-Machine Honorary AwardSitges - Catalonian International Film Festival
1992Gordon E. Sawyer AwardAcademy Awards, USA
1992Special AwardAcademy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USA
1991Winsor McCay AwardAnnie Awards
1982Life Career AwardAcademy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USA
1975Golden ScrollAcademy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USABest Stop Motion AnimationThe Golden Voyage of Sinbad (1973)

Nominated awards

Nominated awards

YearAwardCeremonyNominationMovieAward shared with
1982Saturn AwardAcademy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USABest Special EffectsClash of the Titans (1981)
1978Saturn AwardAcademy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USABest Special EffectsSinbad and the Eye of the Tiger (1977)
1959HugoHugo AwardsBest Dramatic PresentationThe 7th Voyage of Sinbad (1958)· Nathan Juran (director)
· Ken Kolb (screenplay)


Looks like we don't have salary information. Sorry!


#Quote
1The cinema was made for fantasy, rather than normal types of stories, mundane stories. It gives you a feeling of wonder, for one thing, it gives you stimulation of the imagination, and I think adults like fantasy as well as children. Most people feel it's rather childish to have an imagination. I don't agree with that. I think you should go through life and imagine the very best.
2I had to do everything because I couldn't find another kindred soul. Now you see eighty people listed doing the same things I was doing by myself.
3There's a strange quality in stop-motion photography, like in King Kong (1933), that adds to the fantasy. If you make things too real, sometimes you bring it down to the mundane.
4I'm very happy that so many young fans have told me that my films have changed their lives. That's a great compliment. It means I did more than just make entertaining films. I actually touched people's lives -- and, I hope, changed them for the better.
5They were considered B pictures because they were made on a tight budget. But we outlived many of the A pictures made at the same time.
6Oh, certainly it was. The Academy ignored every film. So I was grateful we got an Oscar. But that was for Lifetime Achievement.
7[from an interview in 2000] I went to see it again and again. I was a King Kong (1933) addict! I loved the way the film took you from the mundane world into the surreal.
8King Kong (1933) haunted me for years, I came out of the theatre in another world. I'd never see anything like that before in my life. I didn't know how it was done and that was half the charm. I didn't just say "Eureka, I've found what I want to do", that came over a period of time. But I'd done a few dioramas in clay of the La Brea tar pits and I saw in "King Kong" how you could make them move. Luckily a friend of my father's worked at RKO and he knew all about stop-motion, so I started experimenting in my garage.
9The problem was that Mighty Joe Young (1949) was seen as expensive by the studios. A lot of them got frightened, so I had to go to the other extreme and prove that you could do it on a budget. As a result, I'm afraid, I got stuck in the low-budget productions, which could be very frustrating but seem to be coming to the fore now as classics.
10I got tired of being in a dark room while the rest of the crew went off making another two or three films while I was still on one! But I don't regret it. People ask me if I would have used computer graphics today. I may have, I don't know. There's a lot of technology now that allows you to view instantly the film you've just shot. But I never cared what I had done, I only cared where I was going.
11The thing that finally persuaded me to quit was that I saw that the nature of the hero was changing. When I was growing up we had heroes such as Cary Grant, Ronald Colman and David Niven, real gentlemen on the screen. Now, all you have is Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone and all those people who solve problems with their fists. It's a different world and I sometimes feel I'm not part of it. Say what you like about Hollywood in my time, but they were in the business of happy endings, of escapism. Now, you have to sit through two hours of people dying, you know. Today, everything's so graphic it's rather unnerving.
12[on his Oscar] I was delighted to be recognized, and pleased now that animation is recognized as a legitimate profession.
13I'm another snowball. Willis H. O'Brien started the snowball, then I picked it up, then ILM picked it up and now the computer generation is picking it up. Where it will end, I don't know. Maybe in holography, although I'm not sure I'd like a grotesque monster appearing in 3-D in my living room.

#Trademark
1Famous for his imaginative stop-motion special effects which are showcased in fantasy films depicting Greek Mythological and Arabian Nights stories.

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