Category Archives: Videos

S.S. Wilson TV Interview 8/17/2015

Writer, producer and director S.S. Wilson was interviewed on AZTV Morning Scramble 8/17/2015. Topics covered included his films Short Circuit, Tremors, Batteries Not Included, Heart and Souls and his books Tucker’s Monster and Fraidy Cats.

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Tremors
Tremors 3
Tucker’s Monster
S.S. Wilson
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Tremors Miniature Graboid 25th Anniversary

Part 1

It’s been 25 years since TREMORS was released in theatres. In that time, it found its audience, spawned three sequels and a television series… all from a little monster movie that was not even considered a success back in 1990.

Part 2

Seemingly creatures unto themselves for the first act of TREMORS, the snake-like graboid “tongues” were mostly independent puppets for much of the filming. Looking like heavy duty vacuum hoses under their foam latex skin, the tongues were cable operated and used extensively throughout the film. Co-writer S.S. Wilson and director Ron Underwood even helped out on the reverse photography tests!

Part 3

The 25th anniversary of TREMORS continues. Part 3 features the work put into fabricating the full-size graboids–from early movement tests to final paint. You’ll dig it! Also be sure to check out http://creaturefeatures.com/ for information on the TREMORS 25TH ANNIVERSARY CAST & CREW

Part 4

Travel back to late spring of 1989 as Alec and Tom and the ADI set crew arrive in Lone Pine, California with the full-size graboids. In addition to getting the monsters ready, it didn’t take long for the shenanigans to begin. Check out http://creaturefeatures.com/ for information on TREMORS CAST & CREW REUNION

Part 5

Part 5 is a journey in stills featuring construction and filming of the smaller-scale graboids ADI built for TREMORS (not to mention a very special look back into the fashion of shorts)

Part 6

The last segment of the TREMORS 25th Anniversary series features the 1/4 scale miniature graboid in more detail–from mechanical skeleton construction to painting the foam latex skin and tests of the puppeteering controls, all leading to final photography.

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Graboid Design and Creation ADI

Amalgamated Dynamics, Inc. (http://www.studioadi.com) designed and created “graboids” for the 1989 cult classic TREMORS. This video chronicles the fabrication and puppetry on set.

 

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Tremors Movie Trailer

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S.S. Wilson gives a tour of his office

S.S. Wilson, writer of Tremors and Short Circuit gives a tour of his office.

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Short Circuit – time lapse of S.S. Wilson assembling standee

Time lapse of screenwriter S.S. Wilson assembling a never before assembled Short Circuit standee.

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Desk of Destiny – stop motion animation by S.S. Wilson

Here’s some early stop motion animation from when S.S. Wilson, writer of such films as Tremors & Short Circuit, was at USC’s Film school in the mid 1970s. This was shot on Super 8mm film. You’ll note that the desk lamp predates Pixar’s by many years.

 

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Tucker’s Monster – Promos

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S.S. Wilson’s Stories – Short Circuit – Johnny 5

S.S. Wilson the co-writer of Short Circuit 1 and 2 shows off his collection of memorabilia from Short Circuit and Short Circuit 2.

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S.S. Wilson’s Stories – 1st Sound Movie

S.S. Wilson the writer of such films as Tremors and Short Circuit shows his first sound movie.

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The Idea Behind Tremors

S.S. Wilson the co-writer of Tremors tells the story of how he came up with the idea for the film Tremors.

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Michael Gross Receiving Best Act Award for Tremors 3

Michael Gross accepting the Best Actor award for his roll in Tremors 3: Back to perfection. This award was presented at the DVD Exclusive Awards in 2001.

Michael Gross wins Best Actor for Tremors 3!
Michael’s Acceptance Speech
Michael Gross wins Best Actor for Tremors 3!
Michael and his wife at the awards

 

At the Video Premiere Awards show October 23rd. 2001, Tremors 3 star Michael Gross was presented with the Best Actor award for DVD and VHS film release.

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The “Father” of Short Circuit

A group of filmmakers recently came to our attention when they requested an interview with Stampede’s S. S. Wilson. They were making a documentary on famed robot Number Five, star of Short Circuit and Short Circuit II. But the whole course of their research was changed by new information they found. They claim to have uncovered a decades-old robot which was the inspiration for the Number Five character.

Part 1

Part 2

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Graboid Tentacle Test

Early Graboid tentacle test. S.S. Wilson takes a grab to the face. Ouch!

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Early Graboid Tentacle Test

This is a test of the articulated puppet mechanism which would eventually be used on set as a Tremors Graboid tentacle.  Yes, this test scene is shot in reverse.

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Early Graboid Tentacle Test – Over Wall and Feel Around

This is a test of the articulated puppet mechanism which would eventually be used on set as a Tremors Graboid tentacle. This is perhaps the most ambitious of the early tests requiring multiple puppeteers to operate the tentacle for this complex series of motions.

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Early Graboid Tentacle Test – Feel the Wall

This is a test of the articulated puppet mechanism which would eventually be used on set as a Tremors Graboid tentacle.

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Early Graboid Tentacle Test – Basic Squirm

This is a test of the articulated puppet mechanism which would eventually be used on set as a Tremors Graboid tentacle.

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AB 3D Rendering

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AB Walking Animation

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Graboid Turn Sequence

This is an early computer generated (CG) graboid created by CG effects house Himani productions. It was created in this spinning form so that we could study it from all angles to make sure that we had the proportions right before going to the next steps of “painting” putting on the skin texture. This was the first time a graboid was ever built in computer form. In Tremors 1 and Tremors 2, graboids were created solely with full-sized puppets and ¼ scale miniatures.

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AB Door Crash

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AB junkyard animation test

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Shrieker Run Cycle

A “cycle” in animation terms is an action that is the same at the beginning and the end. In other words, it’s an action you can repeat over and over with no jump or glitch. The animators created this run cycle so that we could see what shriekers would look like when charging at Burt in the opening El Chaco sequence of Tremors 3. Notice how the shrieker appears to have weight, how its feet blur when they move, and how its head moves naturally with each step. It’s a very nice, realistic piece of animation. Variations of the basic cycle could be used over and over on different shriekers, no matter which way they were running or what size they were. Of course the animators had to create many other actions as well, such as the animals falling when shot.

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