About Bob

Photo of Bob ThorneBob Thorne is a senior film Special Effects technician & TV effects designer/supervisor.

His interest in film started at age 12, when his father bought a standard 8mm movie camera. From 13 until well into his 20’s, Bob was making his own films with school friend Digby Milner. After working at Dixons Technical in Soho Square as a 16mm projectionist & video operator in 1974, later as photographic buyer at Wallace Heaton New Bond Street, followed by a few years as a Dixons branch manager.

In 1976, Digby started working for special effects supervisor John Stears. He went on to work for Alan Whibley & Derrick Meddings. During this period Bob would spend his days off, weekends & holidays, helping Digby on major productions, which included:

  • Star Wars - The Empire Strikes Back
  • The London Connection (Disney)
  • Dragon Slayer
  • Supergirl
  • Superman II
  • Star Wars - Return of the Jedi
  • The Shining
  • We’ll Meet Again
  • The Martian Chronicles (1 month on location in Malta)
  • The Scarlet Pimpernel
  • Santa Clause

Finally Bob got up the courage to ‘give up his day job’ at the beginning of 1983, working full time as special effects trainee under supervisor Alan Whibley for Handmade films.

In 1989 Bob branched out into animatronics, spending several years at Jim Henson’s creature shop. In 1995 Bob gave up the uncertainty of freelance life & joined Artem full time as special effects supervisor. Bob is an ‘all rounder’, having for the last 10 years branched into models, props & stop frame animation puppets, while continuing to supervise special effects & animatronics. Here are some of the productions he has worked on:

Production Director Year
Bullshot Dick Clements 1983
Billy Connelly, Mel Smith, Frances Tomelty
Sakharov Jack Gold 1983
Glenda Jackson, Jason Robards
Dempsey & Makepeace LWT 1984
Michael Brandon, Glynis Barber
Insignificance Nicolas Roeg 1984
Tony Curtis, Theresa Russell, Gary Busy
Lady Jane Trevor Nunn 1984
Helena Bonham-Carter, Patrick Stewart, Cary Elwes, Sir Michael Hordern
Passage to India (model unit) David Lean 1984
The Company of Wolves Neil Jordan 1984
Angela Lansbury, David Warner, Stephen Rae
Remington Steele Mary Tyler Moore Prods 1985
Pearce Brosnan
Revolution Hugh Hudson 1985
Al Pacino, Donald Sutherland, Natasia Kinski, Annie Lennox
Bellman and True Richard Loncraine 1986
Bernard Hill, Richard Hope, Kieran O’Brien, Frances Tomelty
If Tomorrow Comes Jerry London 1986
Liam Neeson, Tom Berenger
Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne Jack Clayton 1987
Bob Hoskins, Dame Maggie Smith
Just Ask for Diamond Stephen Bayly 1988
Saeed Jaffrey, Patricia Hodge, Jimmy Nail, Roy Kinnear, Bill Patterson
The Crystal Maze David Croft 1988-1994
Richard O’Brien, Ed Tudor-Pole
The Lair of the White Worm Ken Russell 1988
Amanda Donahoe, Hugh Grant
The Witches Nicholas Roeg 1988
Angelica Houston, Rowan Atkinson, Jane Horrocks, Mai Zetterling
Hardware Richard Stanley 1989
Dylan McDermott, Stacey Travis, Iggy Pop, Lemmy, John Lynch
Monster Maker Jim Henson 1989
Kieran O’Brien, Harry Dean Stanton, Michael Gambon
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Steve Barron 1990
Judith Hoag, Elias Koteas, David Forman, James Saito
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II Michael Pressman 1991
Paige Turco, David Warner, Kevin Clash, Ernie Reyes Jr.
The Flintstones Brian Levant 1993
John Goodman, Elizabeth Taylor, Rick Moranis, Rosie O’Donnell
Hackers (City of text - model unit) Iain Softley 1995
Angelina Jolie
Tess of the D’Urbervilles Ian Sharp (LWT) 1997
Justine Waddell, Oliver Milburn, Jason Flemyng
Brisk ‘Planet Hollywood’ Ken Lidster 1998
Bruce Willis (voice)
Brisk ‘Dojo’ (Karate Kid/Bruce Lee) Ken Lidster 1999
Ralph Macchio, Pat Morita (voices)
Millennium Dome - Home Planet NMEC 1999
Some Voices Simon Cellan-Jones 1999
Daniel Craig, David Morrissey, Kelly Macdonald
Brisk ‘Elvis - Jailhouse Rock’ Ken Lidster 2000
James Brown, Willie Nelson (voices)
Brisk ‘Danny DeVitto’ Ken Lidster 2001
Danny De Vitto (voice)
Code 46 (Hi-tech props) Michael Winterbottom 2003
Tim Robbins, Samantha Morton
The Brothers Grimm Terry Gilliam 2003
Matt Damon, Heath Ledger, Mackenzie Crook, Jonathan Pryce
Batman Begins (Hi-tech props) Christopher Nolan 2004
Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Liam Neeson, Morgan Freeman
Exitz (Hi-tech props) Laurens C. Postma 2004
Malcolm McDowell, Perizaad Zorabian
Peperami ‘Noodles’ Ken Lidster 2004
League of Gentlemen’s Apocalypse Steve Bendelack 2005
Jeremy Dyson, Mark Gatiss
Silence Is Golden Chris Shepherd 2006