The Making of The Space Pirates (Revised Edition)
By Russ Port, Dean Rose & Stuart Palmer


Russ Port Talks us Through the Making of TSP...





Space Pirates is rightly regarded for it's excellent model work, for the recon we had (by kind courtesy of a private collector) photos of the Beta Dart, a Space Beacon, the Space Corps ship (the V-Ship) with some interesting photos of the V Ship docking into a beacon, as well as a photo of the Minnow being hung into position by a member of staff. These were supplemented with grabs from clips in the episode as well as more shots of the Minnow and of the individual sections of the beacon.

It was soon decided that despite the potential for CGI in a serial in which models feature so prominently it would be a shame to waste the photos so most of the shots are actually 2D zooms and pans over the photos.




However, conspicuous by its absence was Milo Clancey's ship, The LIZ79. In the original version Rick cleverly compensated for this by using internal shots from the LIZ, however these were clearly not acceptable for the 2007 version so perennial LC CGI genius, Stuart Palmer, was asked to produce a CGI version of the LIZ, based on the small blurry shot of it watched on a screen by Hermack and Warne. This led to great debates between Dean and I over which parts of the ship were which, in particular as to whether one bit was a small front "wing" or a long nose cone. I bowed to Dean's experience on this one and we went with a wing and Stuart's version was produced and looked excellent.




I wasn't in the least bit gratified (honest!) when shortly after Space Pirates recon was complete an actual picture of the LIZ 79 was found in a 1969 edition of 8mm magazine by our own Stuart Palmer showing that his render was unerringly accurate, except for the lack of a front wing and the presence of a long nose cone!