A Friend Remembers Ray Harryhausen

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Many of you are familiar with the name Bruce Crawford because Media Mikes helps promote his benefit classic film screenings. Bruce was blessed to have been able to call the great Ray Harryhausen a friend. Here is a brief tribute he composed for him:

I am still dealing with the fact that I will not hear his booming baritone voice again, and his puckish sense of humor.

I know it isn’t common at all for someone to have been a childhood fan of such an artist, and then become such close friends. Even Ray would comment on that. When I would stay at his house in Kensington I would get the mail for them at the front door and, my God, there would be letters for him from around the world. And this for a special effects filmmaker, not Tom Cruise!

We would walk to the grocery store and pick up brook trout that his wife would prepare and was it ever good! I have dozens of stories I could share, but he was so much more than a great and legendary filmmaker to me. We had so much fun together. He would jokingly call me his illegitimate son! At my “King Kong” event, he addressed me as “Sid” Crawford, after the greatest showman in Hollywood history, Sid Grauman. Praise from Caesar.

We went on a dinosaur dig in Canada with paleontologists… how amazing is that? Digging dinosaur bones with Ray! And he taped it on his hand held video recorder. I still have that tape today. Only a handful of people in the entire world had the kind of relationship I had with Ray and his wife and daughter and I knew it at the time. It seemed so normal and actually expected…like I always knew, even as a kid, that this would happen the way it did.

One of the most influential filmmakers in history…an artist, genius and for me someone who has been a part of my life…. all of my life…. and will always be so.

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