Update #2

Pre-Orders Still Available for the  Special
Limited Edition 3-Volume Box Set Reprint of
Ray Harryhausen
Master of the Majicks

Volumes 1, 2, and 3. 

We are finishing up the special limited edition reprint of  Ray Harryhausen - Master of the Majicks as a 3-volume Box Set complete with custom  slipcase. Each volume of this limited edition  reprint is being revised and updated, and each volume is also being offered individually.

Ray in 1983 with his wonderful Allosaurus model from  One Million Years B.C



First off, if you have already ordered the box set, individual volumes, or any of the accessories, including those orders that were part of the FundAnything campaign, I can assure you that all of your information is secure and in place, safe and sound. Our database is current and up to date, and is backed up safely.

This Newsletter is an update on the progress of the project and is going out to everyone, and doesn't mean your order has been overlooked has gone missing.

We've been working steadily towards updating all 3 volumes with new photos and text, as well as making corrections to information and content, all the way down to fixing those pesky little typos. Just two weeks ago author Mike Hankin interviewed Damian Thomas who played Prince Kassim in Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger.

Each volume is shaping up to becoming even better than the original editions. even beyond my own original expectations.  (Scroll down for new preview images and other details. You can also go right to our website by clicking  HERE.)

The project has grown into a substantial undertaking, almost the equivalent to creating a whole new volume. Each volume will be expanded by an additional 16 pages, and new material has been added throughout the books themselves.

Effort has also been directed at refining "technical" matters such as optimizing grayscale densities and color balance. Also, since the original volumes were published over a period of 5 years, I've been going back and reformatting such elements as captions and footers (the chapter name and page numbers at the bottom of each page) to now be consistent throughout all three volumes, as well as other layout and typographical refinements, color schemes, and so on. I wanted to take maximum advantage of this last opportunity to "get it right."

Yours Truly (wearing my  King Kong
tie) with Ray on the occasion of his receiving a "Star" on the Hollywood Walk of Fame,
June 10, 2003.

So, yes, this project has taken a bit longer than originally projected, but we're now right on the verge of finishing up and handing off to the printer. Once that occurs, we'll be able to pin down a precise production calendar, including shipping date, and everyone will be informed of that schedule.

Everyone's support of this project is much appreciated, and I'm confident that the final revised edition will be well worth the wait!
Many thanks,
Ernest Farino

PS: We're down to the last available copies of
this limited edition reprint (on a pre-order basis),
so if you're interested, I encourage placing a
pre-order as soon as possible.

Remember, this limited edition reprint
will not  be available  later in bookstores
or  on Amazon or eBay. 

We've now accumulated over 700 added images spanning all three volumes, supplementing the 6,100+ photos and artwork in the original volumes. Also, many existing photos have been upgraded from better-quality source material. Below are a few random samples of new images:

Miniature set from Son of Kong (left) and the scene from the film (right). The dark oval on the miniature set is the opening for the rear projected image of live action footage.

Ray and Diana Harryhausen with Mrs. Willis O'Brien, and Ray being interviewed by Mike Hankin in the early 1980s.

Extremely rare Lost World cover magazine from 1925, the Kong model on set, and a page from the original King Kong pressbook from 1933.

Art director's sketch of the set of the interior of Max O'Hara's Golden Safari nightclub from Mighty Joe Young (1949), and Ray's rocket model from 20 Million Miles to Earth (1957).

George Pal with the stop motion models of the Shoemaker's Elves from The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm (1962) and Ray's Hydra from Jason and the Argonauts in front of the rear projection screen.

Tropical beauties: Beth Rogan on the Mysterious Island (1961) and Jane Seymour from Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger (1977).

We have compiled a gallery of "surface gauges," the pointers that animators use as a guide to positioning the models frame-by-frame. While concentrating on the action, Ray and others occasionally left the pointer on the set when exposing the frame. Most of these frames have been removed from the most recent DVD editions, but we've sought out earlier video editions and film prints to present a glimpse of one of the mechanical components of the stop motion process.

Below: Just for fun, a gallery of comparison frames of actors who appeared twice in Ray's films.

Plus, New F eatures  and Visual Material
(This list appeared in the previous Newsletter, but is repeated here for new readers.)
  • Research and new and/or corrected information provided by Mike Hankin, Jim Danforth, Greg Kulon, Mark Wolf, James Mansfield, Ron Borst, Don Glut, Ted Newsom, Tim Cole, Arnold Kunert, Steven Archer, Bob Statzer, Peter Cook, Chris Endicott, Rolf Giesen, Bill Warren, Sam Calvin, Alan Friswell, Sherri Alberoni, and others;
  • A report with photos of Ray's memorial service at St. Paul's Church in London, and photos of the wreath placed on Ray's "Star" on the Hollywood Walk of Fame by the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce;
  • Mike Hankin's new interview with Mike Tilly who worked for British special effects maestro Les Bowie, illustrated with frames from a rarely-seen 1964 featurette on the making of First Men "In" the Moon;
  • A 1964 article by John Aldred, the sound technician who created the distorted voice effects for The Grand Lunar in First Men "In" the Moon with technical details and a photo of the device he built specially for this purpose;
  • A 1933 article in which Murray Spivack details the then-innovative techniques used to create the roars and growls of the dinosaurs in King Kong as well as the chest-thumping sound effects of the Big Guy himself;
  • A gallery of previously unseen live action photos from The Lost World (1925) along with additional photos of the stop-motion dinosaurs;
  • A transcription of the segment of the 1950 Academy Awards ceremony in which Patricia Neal presented Willis O'Brien with his Oscar for Mighty Joe Young, and a newly found color photo of Darlyne O'Brien holding O'Bie's Oscar;
  • Extensive new material from the archives of producer/animator Mark Wolf, such as numerous new images of Ray's storyboards from The 7th Voyage of Sinbad (including the "Barrier Sequence" during the opening beach scene with the Cyclops);
  • A selection of actual script pages from Mysterious Island describing the never-filmed sequences that would have featured actor Nigel Green battling the man-eating plant and the marriage of Herbert and Elena;
  • David Schecter's detailed essays on the music in Mighty Joe Young, The Beast From 20,000 Fathoms, It Came From Beneath the Sea, The Animal World, and 20 Million Miles to Earth, reprinted with permission from the original texts accompanying the CD releases from Monstrous Movie Music. This material includes extensive information about the use of stock library music (and its use in other films) and biographies and photos of some of the composers;
  • An account and photo of Ray in 1995 participating in a dig for dinosaur fossils in Alberta, Canada by Dr. Michael J. Ryan, Head of Vertebrate Paleontology at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History;
  • Updates to The Ray Harryhausen Timeline, John Ballentine's Harryhausen Magazine Index, Cast & Credits, Filmographies, Harryhausen Collectibles, and new entries in our list of "Snippets" of stop motion seen in other films.

...And Much More!


Several Options Are Available:
  1. The full 3-volume Box Set of hardcover books (with dust jackets), contained in a new, deluxe slipcase sized to hold all 3 volumes. (The slipcase pictured at right is a prototype.The color and design may change.)
  2. Each volume individually (in case you already have one or two of the original editions).  
  3. The deluxe slipcase by itself (if you already have all 3 of the original books).  
  4. A fully designed and laid-out magazine-style supplement containing all of the corrections, updated information, and new photos. If you have all 3 volumes of the original edition, you can add this supplement to your set of books and not
    feel as though 
    you have to buy the 3 volumes all over again.
Each Box Set or individual volume purchased separately will include a full color Bookplate personally signed by author Mike Hankin  (the signature is simulated in the image below) :


Ray with Majicks

* Only 500 copies of the 3-volume Box Set will be printed.  


* Only 500 copies of each volume will be available individually.


* This edition will not be available in bookstores nor offered on eBay or Amazon.


The original editions are long sold out and command extraordinary after-market prices on eBay and Amazon.

So don't delay! Ensure getting your copy of the Box Set-- or complete your collection with one or two of the individual volumes-- by placing your order now.

"You can see on every page the love and 
care you have put into these books. They
really are superb."   --Ray Harryhausen
(shown at his home in London in 2008)
Click  HERE  to read about the Box Set, details of the contents of each of the
3 volumes, published reviews and customer comments, and to view our
photo montage trailers and slideshows of sample layouts.

You can order the Box Set or each volume individually. Or, if you have the original editions, you can order just the slipcase and/or the magazine-style supplement containing the new photos and text. All of these options are listed on our Order Page.

Projected delivery: Spring/Summer, 2015.
Updates and Progress Reports will
be sent out regularly. 

Pledges/orders in the FundAnything campaign have already accounted
for a considerable quantity of the limited edition of 500 copies, so don't delay.

Click HERE to go directly to our Order Page .

Click on the e-mail icon below:

There is no way to overstate the importance of these books. They are, simply, the most perfect books about Ray Harryhausen ever made.
- Guillermo del Toro

This [book set] is a labor of love, a meticulous survey of Ray's life and career.
- Leonard Maltin

These books are an absolute must-have for any Ray Harryhausen fan. Believe me, you will not be disappointed even if you've read everything else out there.
- Sam Calvin

These three volumes all together are the greatest books on fantasy films- ever.
- Ron Borst

As impressive as Volume 2 is, Volume 3 --covering Ray Harryhausen's British films-- eclipses it in nearly every way.
- Tim Lucas, Video Watchdog magazine