Ray Harryhausen, the great stop-motion animator and inspiration for many of today’s Special Effects Gurus passed away today at the age of 92. I remember seeing The 7th Voyage of Sinbad at age 8 and it made quite an impression. He was the first special effects artist I could actually name (it helped that he had an unusual name), and (I later learned) many of his films were scripted around his astounding animated creatures and concepts. Unlike today’s Special Effects Extravaganzas, requiring armies of animators and effects technicians, Harryhausen supposedly did most of the animation himself.
I got to meet Mr. Harryhausen in 1982 when he took a tour of I.L.M. and I got to show him around the Optical Department. I managed to secure his autograph on a Lobby Card from It Came From Beneath the Sea (which has faded somewhat since I had it framed and displayed).