Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Starlog Internet Project: Starlog #14, June 1978: Behind the Scenes

And it's another behind-the-scenes special effects shot, an image that displays a cool thing -- Star Wars matte painter P.S. Ellenshaw painting background for the Star Wars Death Star shaft scene -- but it's not a good image for the magazine's cover. On the staff side, James Oberg is now listed as science advisor; he's also a regular contributor to sister magazine Future.

Starlog #14
80 pages (including covers)
Cover price: $1.75

Comedy, tragedy, and a little romance. Except no romance. This issue, one of the first back issues of Starlog I ever purchased (not that you asked), is nothing out of the ordinary of recent or the next couple issues. Nice.

Kerry O'Quinn's From the Bridge uses talk about science-fiction conventions to talk about SF fans who actually do something constructive with their ardor; Communications letters include a note from Ron Miller, who -- I believe -- is the same space artist Ron Miller who would soon be a space art advisor to Starlog and Future magazines, plus readers pro and con on Close Encounters; Log Entries includes short bits on NASA's plans for Skylab (besides "duck," I suppose), Gerard K. O'Neill's space station ideas, and ultra-brief notes about future SF productions (including something called Galactica). Stop-motion artist Jim Danforth is interviewed by Charles Bogle; Gerald Morris describes The Incredible Melting Man; Gerry de la Ree profiles fantasy artist Virgil Finlay; David Gerrold's State of the Art deals with big egos; an unbylined TV Update gives first news of Ray Bradbury's classic The Martian Chronicles coming to TV; Jonathan Eberhart's Interplanetary Excursions, Inc., stops at Io; there's a two-page photo essay on Space: 1999's special effects; in a coup for the magazine, Saturday Night Live writer Michael O'Donoghue's script for the Star Trek parody, "The Last Voyage of the Starship Enterprise," is reprinted; Susan Sackett's Star Trek Report gives an overview (publicity, script, special effects, etc.) of the Trek film; Kerry O'Quinn introduces a ballot for readers to suggest the SF movies from which they'd like Starlog to produce soundtrack records; David Houston interviews Project: UFO Producer Col. William T. Coleman; Richard Meyers and Ed Naha write about the fake-moon-landing movie Capricorn One; David Houston profiles matte artist P.S. Ellenshaw in the SFX cover story; Houston's Visions column looks at the role of extrapolation in creating science-fiction visions; and Editor Howard Zimmerman's Lastword on fantastic technology that might not be so fantastic.
"Stop motion isn't taken for granted in Hollywood, ... it's ignored. The industry doesn't know anything about stop motion. The fans have a far better understanding of what goes into an animate dfilm than most of your motion picture executives."
--Jim Danforth, interview, "A Tale of Cinematic Survival by Stop Motion's Heir Apparent"
To view previous Starlog Archive issues, click on "Starlog Internet Archive Project" in the keywords below.
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