Karen Prell Photo Gallery: Labyrinth (1985)


The Worm proved wildly popular among fans even though he enthusiastically told the heroine Sarah (played by Jennifer Connelly) to travel in the wrong direction. His charming voice was dubbed after filming by British actor Timothy Bateson.

I performed both the finger-sized rod puppet Worm and the larger close-up hand puppet Worm from behind the brick wall of the Labyrinth. I manipulated the front half of the body, head and mouth with my right hand inside the hand puppet while my left hand operated a remote control for the eye turns and eye blinks. The video monitor provided the film camera's view of the Worm.

British puppeteer David Barclay (lead puppeteer of another famous worm, the original Jabba the Hutt) assisted me by performing the tail end of the large close-up Worm.

My small hands were put to good use for the wild gestures of the leader of the Fireys, performed by Kevin Clash (famous as the puppeteer of Sesame Street's Elmo)

Before donning the full body of the Junk Woman, I rehearsed her scenes with the head only. Because her head was at the level of my waist, it actually worked better to turn my hand upside down with my fingers in her lower jaw and my thumb in her brow. Radio-controlled eye turns and blinks were performed by Toby Philpott. Her voice was dubbed after filming by British actress Denise Bryer.

When wearing the full Junk Woman costume, my head was inside the upended chair on her junk pile. I could see the camera's view of the shot on a heavy bread loaf-sized video monitor hanging around my neck. Sometimes I also had to straddle an assistant puppeteer on a little rolling trolley between my legs, reaching up to perform both her hands. My back has never been the same since!






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