The other day in the shop a gentleman approached the counter to enquire about the R2-D2 displayed in the window. I replied that the students at Brighton Metropolitan College in Worthing had built him for us a few years ago. The gentleman smiled and said “I built the original!”.
The gentleman in question was Mr. David Watling who then proceeded to tell me his story. David was Managing Director at a manufacturing company called Peteric when he was approached by the production team for Star Wars to build the very first R2-D2. They created one of the most famous robots in movie history at their factory. Made entirely from Aluminium the now famous shape must have seemed strange to build at the time. “The most fiddly part was trying to get the tripod system to work without the whole thing falling over” David said about the build. He went on to congratulate the students for the authenticity of the reproduction that now graces the front of our store.
After working on R2-D2 David’s company went on to create the very first working Xenomorph head for the original Alien movie. Based on H.R. Giger’s and Ridley Scott’s original designs David’s team built a fully working version of the Alien head. The head featured a fully working mouth in a mouth that the Alien is now famous for.
David has kindly allowed us to share these original photographs of both the early construction of R2-D2 and the Alien Head showing how the mechanism worked before it was dressed for the film. These images are an incredible insight to the creation of two of the most iconic characters in Sci-fi and movie history.
The R2-D2 is featured in the book Star Wars Costumes by Brandon Alinger and J. W. Rinzler which we have in stock in the store for £34.99.
*All images remain copyright of their respective owners and are used under permission.