Peter Hirschberg

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Seattle Science Fiction Museum

I found a bunch of photos from the museum on Flickr. Please take the time to flip through them. It's worth it!

While in Seattle this week, I visited the Science Fiction Museum. A definite MUST SEE for any true sci-fi movie fan. Heartbreakingly, they did not allow photos inside the exhibit. I took this single photo of "Gort" at the entrance to the exhibit, before you actually go in.

"Gort! Klaatu barada nikto!"

Since no photos were allowed, I'll see if I can describe some of the things I remember seeing. Please note, these items are for the most part entirely originals used during the filming of these classic films and TV shows.

  • Hal 9000 "eye" assembly
  • Full size Cylon costume from "Gun on Ice Planet Zero" (original series)
  • Original Muffet dagget costume (originally worn by a chimp for the show) from Battlestar Galactica.
  • And entire wall of '60s style "ray guns". I think I remember seeing Deckard's gun from Blade Runner in there somewhere.
  • From the original series Star Trek, they had the Enterprise filming model, the captains chair, a "computer console" from the bridge, and several authentic uniforms worn during the show including Kirk's and Spock's uniforms.
  • From Aliens, a full size loader exoskeleton as worn by Sigourney Weaver, and a full size (I think) Queen Alien (which was unbelievably awesome).
  • Robot B9 from "Lost in Space" and Robbie the Robot from "Forbidden Planet" - both were in the same exhibit and were "bickering" back and forth.
  • A full-sized ET (not sure if this was a filming copy or not)
  • An R2-D2 (didn't look original but I could be wrong)
  • Original "Twiki" costume from Buck Rogers in the 25th century. It looked like time had started to take its toll on that costume as some of the rubber parts of the suit looked like they were degrading.
  • Original latex masks worn by some of the Cantina creatures in the first Star Wars movie.
  • A Stormtrooper costume (I believe this said it was fan-made, but it looked cool)
  • Original Death Star model from the 1977 film. The model was lit from within - the tiny windows formed by scratching holes in the paint. Oddly, the model was only built on one side (the side with the giant laser dish) - the other side was clear plastic. They may have added the clear plastic rear side just for the exhibit. The inside was plywood, with the thin plastic shell over it.
  • A controller for the full-size robotic T-Rex in Jurassic Park. I assume the operators would move parts of the small armatured model which had sensors on every joint, and the computers would reflect these movements into the full size Rex.
  • An "egg" (or I guess a cocoon, to be exact) from "Cocoon".
  • Some costumes from Blade Runner (including the clear plastic outfit worn by Zhora).
  • Lots of Borg prosthetics and appendages.
  • A small model of all the sets for the original Star Trek Enterprise. This was cool to see them all laid out together to see how they sort of connected. I imaging this was the layout they had them on the soundstage.
  • Small "Squiddies" models from The Matrix.
  • Movie posters from perhaps every sci-fi film ever made. I'm not kidding.
The outside of the building was EXTREMELY unusual, and I was allowed to take photos (at least I assume, and if not, kiss my butt). It seemed to be made of thousands of squares of curved metal all riveted together.

I found this article which describes the architecture of the museum. There's even a monorail that runs through the middle of the building. Here's a nice illustration of the museum I found on the site.

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