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My absolute Comic-Con highlight yesterday was getting a chance to tour the traveling art exhibition for Tim Burton’s upcoming stop-motion, black & white film, Frankenweenie. The small exhibition area (Hall E, Booth 3635) was walled off by several of the actual sets from the film: A classroom, an attic workshop, and a kitchen/dining room. There were also little display cases showing some of the props used in the film, “Tim Burton’s Desk” (with puppet parts and Tim’s notes and notebooks), and Burton’s original sketches.

It’s hard to express how amazing all of this is in person. The tiny props are perfection and the characters look exactly as they do in Burton’s stop-motion films — it’s weirdly spooky to stare at them close up. Everything is beautiful, impeccably modeled, whimsical, and imbued with a kind of magic you don’t experience very often. This is Geppetto’s workshop and you could swear Pinocchio (or in this case, Vincent) is about to animate into a real boy.

The “Art of” Exhibition is touring the world. Next stop Plaza Universidad, Mexico City, July 27-Aug 7. It’ll be back in the US, at Disney CA Adventure Park, on Sept 14-Nove 5. The film Frankenweenie comes to theaters on Oct 5th.


Gareth Branwyn

Gareth Branwyn is a freelancer writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture, including the first book about the web (Mosaic Quick Tour) and the Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Building Robots. He is currently working on a best-of collection of his writing, called Borg Like Me.

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