Yes, it’s that man again… Peter Jackson, creator of Meet the Feebles and other more hobbity fayre, once again putting the sort of aircraft that fit right in at the Scarf and Goggles back on the silver screen.
In this case it’s the original Curtiss Helldiver – sister type to the aircraft which took a starring role in the original King Kong movie of 1933. When Jackson remade the movie which started him off on the road to tinseltown, he wanted the most authentic flying scene he could create, and without any surviving Curtiss biplanes of the right vintage he built a pair of new ones… just like his squadron of full-size Lancaster bombers being readied for The Dam-Busters.
Obviously most of the flying was done with CGI which gave him the chance to muck about a little. Hence the ‘pilot’ of the star aircraft is none other than aviation artist extraordinaire, Jim Dietz. Jim was able to counsel Jackson on the correct colour scheme for these beauties, and was rewarded with the best seat in the house for Kong’s vertiginous last stand – that of pilot in the leading aircraft. So enjoy one of Jackson’s little in-jokes anew:
“For Jim it was a childhood dream. He got to wear all the gear and fire blanks from a machine gun. He was like a little boy getting to play pilot,” said his wife, Patti.
To see more of Jim’s stunning artwork, go to his website – here!