First Practical Long-Grin Phase 1, the Head


In 1984, the Long-Grin Saga was already a huge and expensive undertaking, even for a major studio. Nevertheless, as director of production for Cine-Media International, and with the support of its president and CEO Bond Johnson, I hired Billy (who about the same time created (and performed in), Mr. StayPuft for GHOSTBUSTERS), to make a model of Long-Grin's head that we could show to potential investors. My reasoning was simple. If I could show a mock-up of the dragon that studio executives and/or investors could see, touch, and with which they could have their pictures taken, it should help convince them that Long-Grin was as feasible as it was exciting.

Billy and I had several meetings to design all the elements that would have to go into the design of the dragon's head and the several critical elements required for the dragon to "speak," (with the aid of puppeteers, and display facial expressions that would be properly interpreted by an audience, BIlly began work on what became a 17-part mould. The model did nothing, but was designed to allow for the servos and wiring required when we went into production. What you see on this page is what greeted me on the first day I went to look at Long-Grin in Billy's studio.