'I crawled into this cupboard with Brian the cat and we went to the centre of the Earth for like three billion years'
If you ever wondered what it takes to bring fictional creatures as bizarre as the Tauntaun to life, the answer is a boat load of acid.
During a fascinating insight into his work on Return of the Jedi,Star Wars animator Phil Tippett shared this wonderful anecdote:
“I took LSD when I was working on Return of the Jedi. I could communicate with my cat Brian, and Brian took me on a journey.
“I crawled into this cupboard with Brian the cat and we went to the centre of the Earth for like three billion years and I was just in this world of molecules. It was fine, it was very calming.
“I decided to go back to work and I was at ILM (Industrial Light & Magic) and I walked into the blue screen stage and it’s huge - everything’s just super illuminated bright blue - and it was just like ‘Aaaah, I took like way too much.’’
Tippett went on to win an Oscar for his work on the movie in 1984, and also did VFX for Jurassic Park, Indiana Jones, RoboCop, Willow and more.
He is far from the first creative to have had very positive experiences with LSD, Steve Jobs having frequently said his hallucinogenic trips were among the most important experiences of his life, and Francis Crick having discovered DNA while taking psychedelic drugs.
Tippett most recently worked on Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens, animating the holochess game.
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