Jim Henson’s Creature Store in London was one of the crucial famed particular results studios within the historical past of movie and tv.
Though based mostly in Los Angeles at present, The Creature Store traces its roots to a brief London workshop Jim Henson set-up in 1978 to develop puppets and creatures for his 1982 fantasy The Darkish Crystal. Owing to a mix of tax incentives and a deep pool expert native craftspeople, London was a preferred hub for costly, effects-heavy science fiction and fantasy filmmaking within the Nineteen Eighties. Consequently, when work started on Jim Henson second fantasy characteristic Labyrinth he had hassle rehiring a few of his Darkish Crystal crew as a result of they have been engaged on different initiatives. Probably impressed by George Lucas’ Industrial Mild and Magic, he determined to forestall that from taking place once more by making a everlasting studio that may completely make use of a workforce of artists and technicians to supply creatures for his initiatives after they have been in manufacturing, and spent the time in between hiring itself out to different producers in want of its experience.
British designer / illustrator Daniel Benney grew up within the Nineties and 2000s obsessive about puppet making, and managed to snag a possibility to go to the legendary workshop in 2003, just some years earlier than it completely closed in 2005. He not too long ago shared a small treasure trove of snapshots from his go to on Medium, and it supplies an exhilarating glimpse of one of the crucial well-known puppet workshops of all time.
The model of the Creature Store Daniel visited in London in 2003 was truly its second location close to Camden (it was initially positioned in a former postal sorting station close to Jim Henson’s home in Hampstead Heath). As you possibly can see within the images, the amenities have been somewhat extra “tough and prepared” than its present digs on the properly appointed Henson lot in Hollywood (see earlier publish), however it’s unbelievable to see so many iconic animatronic creatures in a single workspace, virtually prefer it was a dwelling museum.
If you want to be taught extra about Jim Henson’s Creature Store, I extremely suggest studying Matt Bacon’s No Strings Connected: The Inside Story of Jim Henson’s Creature Store, which was revealed in 1997 whereas the London Creature Store was nonetheless energetic, and extensively paperwork the primary 20 years of its historical past.
Due to Daniel for sharing these nice images that seize an necessary piece of particular results and puppet historical past!