Film Legend Visits Dragon*Con

The audience in The Hyatt’s Fairlie room listened on in awestruck silence as film legends Ray Harryhausen, Julius Schwartz and David A. Kyle talked about their love for film and their careers.

Photos of the panelists, along with those of fellow legends like Ray Bradbury, adorned the walls. Harryhausen’s voice boomed across the small room as he answered Kyle’s questions. Julius Schwartz, with a voice like a gangster from a classic noir film, provided insight as well as comic relief. The panelists talked very casually about the films that influenced them as youngsters. Films including Frankenstein and, of course, the original King Kong came up in their conversation.

Harryhausen, the guru of stop-motion animation, spoke of an interesting story about his huge fascination with King Kong. As a younger man, Harryhausen was standing in the RKO Pictures office and gazed in amazement at the small stop-motion models used in King Kong. Although he coveted these models, he said he didn’t feel comfortable asking for one. Years passed and he laughing stated that Forrest J. Ackerman found a box of Kong models in the basement of the old RKO building.

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