Prop Store

Original Golden Idol from Raiders here...

kpax

Sr Member
new to this prop....

so are any screen used versions ( I assume PropStore as it has the same look and feel of the screen shots) cast from originals available raw?

I saw a Gobler for sale but it is plated. Is that a cast from original or re-sculpt.

If none are available, I may try sculpting a duplicate from the images available but would rather have a cast from the real deal.
 

parfaitelumiere

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
This is how it appears to me, after looking at the 1080p blueray movie version, and after making some screeshots:
-The one on pedestal , front view, and "sand" sequence:
it's easy to see a kind of two parts in the hair, and it has quite a similar look to the dissasembled fx version photo with George Lucas, and looks similar to the description made by several guys here.
-Then the scene where the idol is stolen by the bad guy, and Indy find him dead, and find the statue on the ground
It looks like a solid glass eye version visible on movie (color eyes) and on black and white photos, I think it may be the one from propstore collection.
-Then once Indy is out, many primitives and the vilain take the statue
we can see a plain gold color statue, including the eyes, and the pupils looks like drilled and or black painted.

My opinion is there are two statues on the temple sequence, probably studio filmed, and another sequence, with primitives and german guy, filmed somewhere else, probably outdoor.

But this is only supposition.
 

parfaitelumiere

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Hi guys,

Many thanks to Don Bies for his information.

If the frowning Idol seen in the Archives book was cast from one of the 2 Archives Idols, then the non Glass Eyed Idol in the Archives must also have the frowning face. This style is not seen in the film.

You have to consider the continuity of the Idols. The mechanical eyes version was the main hero, and the one seen the most clearly in the film. We know that they made fixed glass eyed versions that were essentially identical to the mechanical Idol, but without the mechanics and without the seam on the head. These were made to match the mechanical hero. Why then would they make a third version with gold plated eyes, that clearly did not match the one seen in close up in the temple? It would fly in the face of the theory of continuity.

There is no evidence of a version existing with painted pupils, aside from screen captures from the film that show pupils without clearly showing the edge of the cornea. This is just down to lighting and reflections. The Idols seen in the film with pupils have the full glass eyes, it is just not obvious.

Please take a look at this graphic as an illustration of the eyes. The black and white shot is an on set still of Ford holding an Idol next to the spiked Satipo. The edge of the cornea is clearly visible. The color shots are screencaptures from when Ford picks up the Idol next to the Satipo in the film. The glass eyes are not obvious, they even look gold.

http://i304.photobucket.com/albums/nn174/ba100583/IdolEyesIllustration.jpg

As for how the plating was done, I am not sure. It could be that it was not vacuum-metalized but leafed or finished in some other manner. The finish appears rough and uneven in the film, and it clearly did not hold up over time. I believe the finish would have had to have been applied after the Idol backplate was glued/puttied in place.

I was once told that the C-3PO pieces were finished through a process called "Styaniting." I could never find additional information on this process.

All of the OT C3PO costumes, the Idol and the Ark were built and finished in England. I can't see how a California plating company would have been involved in any way, at least for the film's productions. Perhaps they were involved with restorations or promotional pieces.

Regards,
-Brandon
The Prop Store of London

Was not yet on page 4 when I wrote my comment, but it confirms my thoughts...
 

Duncanator

Sr Member
I would like to propose a theory about why there are two versions of the idol in the Lucasfilm archives. Let's call them the scream mouth and the frown mouth. I have no doubt that they are both original to the production. Besides the mouth, they are sculpturally identical in every other way, so why would the production bother making two version? It costs money to do that, and producers don't like spending money if they don't have to. So why.....?

The first clue came to me when I started thinking about why some of the hero idols had moving eyes that ended up NOT being used in the film. Let me digress...

There are 3 phases of film making: Pre-production, Production and Post production.
Pre-production is the planning stage before anything gets shot. This is the phase I'm interested in. (More on this below.)
Production is when they go out and shoot the actors on location and/or on sets.
Post production is when the film gets edited, effects are added, sound effects and music are added, etc...

Pre-production is when locations are scouted, actors are cast, costumes, sets and props are designed & made, and scripts are written and re-written. A lot of people don't realize how much can change during pre-production. The script goes through revisions and re-writes. Sometimes the script is thrown out and completely re-written. It is normal for stories to evolve and be refined right up to shooting (and sometimes even after scenes have been shot!)

If I haven't lost you yet, here is where I think the two versions come from: Many of the relics that Indie searches for throughout his films have magical properties, and apparently in an early version of the script the idol did too - having eyes that could move to watch Indie. Script writers will do this to foreshadow the bigger magic objects that will come later in the movie. Now I propose that in addition to the moving eyes, the early script may have called for the idol's expression to change from a scream to a frown; but by the time they went to go shoot the scene, it was decided that the idol would just be a statue with no magical properties. Perhaps they wanted to keep the scene more grounded in reality in order to not push the audience's suspension of disbelief too early in the film. They would have the rest of the film to get the audience to believe the Ark held big magic.

I contend that both versions of the idol were made for the film, but the plan changed just before they shot the scene, so they used the scream mouth for the hero shots and the frown mouths got relegated to stunt shots. Based on my familiarity with how films get made, I believe this is could be a plausible explanation of why there are two versions at the archives.
 

parfaitelumiere

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I think it can be a good theory, especially after knowing about the moving eyes watching at Indy.
Could be a bit like a wheeping idol and not a wheeping angel aha.
However I didn't see the frown mouth in the movie I will check it again.
But your theory has sense to me.
 

kpax

Sr Member
Just lighting, shadows and angles I think. The frown in the production image is a accentuated by the harsh lighting and deep shadows. The lower mouth frown lines are not the lips but the labial folds seen in the prop store version as well...IMO
 

Duncanator

Sr Member
Just lighting, shadows and angles I think. The frown in the production image is a accentuated by the harsh lighting and deep shadows. The lower mouth frown lines are not the lips but the labial folds seen in the prop store version as well...IMO

It could appear that way, but I have seen both in person at the Lucasfilm archives.
 

kpax

Sr Member
Interested to see what you find out.

To me, the screen used hero versions all look close enough to same with the exception of the glass vs painted eyes.

Still looking for for a nice raw casting like the gobbler. Too bad Sarendabs project didn't happen.
 
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Jamesfett

Sr Member
Perhaps I can clear some of this up...and allow all of you to further this debate.

The two idols in the archives ARE original. One has glass eyes, one doesn't. They are hollow fiberglass castings. The one with the glass eyes has a detachable back, with the seam running along the hairline and the back ridge. It has the bar inside as shown in the pics already posted, as well as the magnetic "latching" mechanism.

When I first started at the archives in 1988, the glass eye version (GE) was in similar condition to the one pictured in the Prop Store images. It was broken as well...as a matter of fact, had someone shown me those photos out of context, I would say they were taken in the late 80s of the GE Idol in the archives.

In 1993, Hata International launched an exhibit in Japan of many of the items in the archives. It wasn't limited to Star Wars; it included Indiana Jones, Willow, Tucker...and even Howard the Duck. As part of that exhibit, they paid for an extensive restoration effort for about 200 items. By that point in time, many things were quite neglected. The two idols were restored then.

For the restoration, both were stripped of the remaining gold plating (it looked like vacuum-metalizing to me); the broken bits were glued back together, and everything sanded smooth to make it look good...perhaps too good. It did look much too clean and not like the original once it came back from the VM, in my opinion.

The Lucasfilm Archive book that has been published was actually the exhibit catalog, written originally in Japanese. Since the two idols, C-3P0 and the Ark were out being VM'd at the time, we couldn't photograph them for the catalog. Hence, there is no photo of 3P0 in the book; a photo of the second damaged, non-restored Ark; and a photo of a casting of the Idol spray painted gold. This Idol was actually a present to Mr. Hata for organizing the exhibit.

Since I can confirm two versions of the idol exist, I think it still leaves the door open to debate as to whether or not the Hawaiian scenes has eyes or not. It was always my opinion that it didn't, and I don't think those screen grabs are conclusive evidence that there are glass eyes in there. The eyes are ill fitting in the one in the archives; there's tiny gaps between the eyes and the lids. I don't see that same fit in the Hawaii scene, nor is there much evidence of the seam line to get those eyes in there. There does appear to be a pupil, but that could've been painted on. Given my experience with 3P0 and the reflective issues the gold VM creates, it could be some odd reflection, but it wouldn't be consistent. My opinion is that they're gold eyes with painted pupils...but that's my opinion.

Let the debate continue...

--Don Bies


Thank you for this link. Good info!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 
QUICK BACKSTORY

I grew up in Novato, CA (about 10 minutes north of San Rafael) around 1990-1991 I had two roommates - one was a guy I bartended with, the other (Dean) worked part-time or had an internship at ILM. For the life of me, I cannot remember Dean's last name, but it began with "S". (Starnowsky, maybe?) I remember Dean's room having some cool items from some of my favorite movies -- there was a wax figure of the T-1000 when he was reforming during the end of T2, and there were also models from different projects that he worked on. He knew I was a huge Star Wars and Raiders of the Lost Ark fan, and when he moved out he gave me a couple of items that I still have today.

The first was a pair of foam casting of Yoda's ears. They were unpainted and kind of a yellowish, vanilla color. Because they easily got smudges on them, I tossed them in a plastic cylinder and kept them there. They have been in a safety deposit box for the last couple of years so I'm sure they're probably just dust in a cylinder now, lol.

The second was a resin casting of the Fertility Idol (see pics below). He said it was a casting from the stunt version of the idol. The original gold paint was fading and wearing off from people holding it, so a couple of years ago, I removed the original paint and recently primed and painted it with a metallic gold rattle can.

HERE'S MY QUESTION

Is there a way to verify the Fertility Idol? When I started researching it, I saw that there's about 100,000 versions out there! I'm not so much concerned on its possible value, but I would like to be able to authenticate its lineage if it truly is what he said it is.

Either way, I still love it, but I thought I would ask the experts!
 

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Hello, everyone! I was referred to this group through a conversation I had with kpax. Earlier today, I posted this to the Replica Props forum and then found one of kpax's post about building a hero idol. Here was my original post:

QUICK BACKSTORY

I grew up in Novato, CA (about 10 minutes north of San Rafael) around 1990-1991 I had two roommates - one was a guy I bartended with, the other (Dean) worked part-time or had an internship at ILM. For the life of me, I cannot remember Dean's last name, but it began with "S". (Starnowsky, maybe?) I remember Dean's room having some cool items from some of my favorite movies -- there was a wax figure of the T-1000 when he was reforming during the end of T2, and there were also models from different projects that he worked on. He knew I was a huge Star Wars and Raiders of the Lost Ark fan, and when he moved out he gave me a couple of items that I still have today.

One of the items was a resin casting of the Fertility Idol (see pics below). He said it was a casting from the stunt version of the idol. The original gold paint was fading and wearing off from people holding it, so a couple of years ago, I removed the original paint and recently primed and painted it with a metallic gold rattle can.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Pat thinks it could be an early cast of the stunt idol that was made, but wanted more pics of it to see. I'll let you know what Pat says once they see the new set of pics I just sent. Either way, I'm glad I found this group of Idol enthusiasts and look forward to reading more!
 

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GeordieIndy

Sr Member
Hi Eric,

Nice score you got there.

I would say yes it does have lineage to an original Stunt Idol. Although it's difficult to tell exactly how close of a generation it is to an original, but I would say close, as it's a nice cast. Nearly all the Idols you see out there have lineage to the Stunt idol, it just depends how many times they have been cast to how much detail or size they lose.

Like all ILM casts I have seen, there is detail missing on the feet and hands at the back, making the Idols shorter than they should be, some I would say are missing up to 10mm, some more and some less. It's probably when it was cast it lost this detail, because I have never to date seen a cast of a Stunt Idol that retained all the detail of the feet and hands.

I know several members on here had access to either a cast from an ILM Idol they obtained, or possibly access to an old ILM mold. Even though these same members say their Idols came from an ILM Idol, I do see slight differences, but this could be depending what generation cast they had access to, and then how their cast turned out.

The best Idol I have come across, which also definitely has lineage to an original Stunt Idol is the Gobler Idol. I know Gobler modified his slightly to give it the look of the Belloq Idol, but you can see it came from a Stunt Idol. I've studied many Idols I have seen over the years, and have a folder full of Idol photos on my computer, and like I say, the Gobler Idol has been the best I have seen to date.

I have never seen a direct cast from the Belloq Idol, which I believe to be the Prop Store Idol, or a cast from the Pedestal Idol. They may exist in private collections, but I have just never seen any.

Hard to say on value of your Idol as there are so many casts out there, but to the right person, who knows. But I do think it's a nice Idol you have there, and thank you for sharing it with us. I never get tired of hearing what Idols people have out there and when and how they obtained them.

Regards,

Andy
 

Knightmare

Sr Member
Hello, everyone! I was referred to this group through a conversation I had with kpax. Earlier today, I posted this to the Replica Props forum and then found one of kpax's post about building a hero idol. Here was my original post:

QUICK BACKSTORY

I grew up in Novato, CA (about 10 minutes north of San Rafael) around 1990-1991 I had two roommates - one was a guy I bartended with, the other (Dean) worked part-time or had an internship at ILM. For the life of me, I cannot remember Dean's last name, but it began with "S". (Starnowsky, maybe?) I remember Dean's room having some cool items from some of my favorite movies -- there was a wax figure of the T-1000 when he was reforming during the end of T2, and there were also models from different projects that he worked on. He knew I was a huge Star Wars and Raiders of the Lost Ark fan, and when he moved out he gave me a couple of items that I still have today.

One of the items was a resin casting of the Fertility Idol (see pics below). He said it was a casting from the stunt version of the idol. The original gold paint was fading and wearing off from people holding it, so a couple of years ago, I removed the original paint and recently primed and painted it with a metallic gold rattle can.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Pat thinks it could be an early cast of the stunt idol that was made, but wanted more pics of it to see. I'll let you know what Pat says once they see the new set of pics I just sent. Either way, I'm glad I found this group of Idol enthusiasts and look forward to reading more!
You can't prove anything . Unless you some how take a time machine back and follow him to prove where he got it lol
 

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