An Interview with Jaws Diorama Sculptor Nigel Humphreys (Part 2 of 2)

Here is the second half of my interview with Nigel Humphreys from Sculptoria Studio about his upcoming series of collectible Jaws dioramas. In this part of the interview, Nigel talks about how he goes about selecting the Jaws scenes and images he hopes to recapture in diorama form, the list of collectibles he plans to release in the near future, and additional movie collectible work he has lined up outside of the Jaws license. Read on....

Titans, Terrors, and Toys: I've noticed that you've already sculpted--or are in the process of sculpting--a Bruce shark bust and an Estuary Attack diorama.

Nigel Humphreys: Oh yes, I've come a long way since those dreamy, childhood days of kit building. I now have the power to create the collectibles of my dreams, and I am loving every moment of doing them. The nose-to-gill Jaws bust I sculpted in 2009 has been put on hold, since Sculptoria Studio will be doing a full version of the movie shark--comprising of the head, the tail, the whole darn thing--quite soon. At the moment though, there are a number of people doing full body sculpts of the shark from Jaws so there is quite a plethora of them out there at the moment. I, on the other hand, am far more interested in sculpting entire, amazingly detailed scenes from the movie Jaws.

I always knew that whenever I finally got around to sculpting the world of Jaws, I would recreate collectibles for the young boy I used to be and for the all the other die-hard fans out there. I design my pieces to evoke all the thrills and spills and horror of Jaws. My primary area of concern when creating my collectibles was that I needed the sea to be as realistic as possible. I would accept no compromise on this issue. There was no way on earth I was going to create Jaws sculptures and paint a plastic sea blue--NO WAY! I wanted to sculpt a really, really realistic sea where I wanted the shark to be seen doing its huge 1975 thing--and with utter attention to detail from every conceivable point of view.

The first of my collectible Jaws movie moments is the Estuary Attack scene. Lovers of Jaws will recall this is the second time in the movie when the shark is revealed, the first being below the waterline--and what a scene that was! I was blown out of my cinema chair when I watched the shark moving sideways under water. That nasty rock pool nightmare of my childhood was back with vengeance and this time it was in the shape of a Great White Shark!

TTT: What goes into deciding which Jaws sculpts you are going to do, or would like to do but decide otherwise?

NH: Good question. In the case of Estuary Attack, I wanted to sculpt something which will thrill, truly thrill the passionate collector. I intend each of my detailed creations to evoke their very best memories from the film. I want every button in their re-collective childhood memories pushed.

TTT: Other than the movie itself, what Jaws materials do you use for reference?

NH: It begins and ends with the movie. There is such a lot of reference material which has surfaced recently, especially as a result of the stunning book Memories From Martha's Vineyard by Matt Taylor and Jim Beller. Those boys and The Shark Is Still Working troopers, its composer, Michael McCormack, Edward McCormack and his Jaws movie archives site, and artist Paul McPhee are the true guardians of the memory of Jaws. I like to think my sculptures will only add to their previous hard work in preserving this celluloid masterpiece forever.

TTT: How supportive has Universal been of your efforts?

NH: Very! As far as Universal goes, I deal with the UK office and although its can be a little long winded going through their channels, they know my intention is to respect the movie they own. They are the governors and an artist like myself has to be patient with the owners of such guarded material from which he or she wishes to derive his own protected works. I have great respect for Universal Pictures, it's a truly wonderful backer of visionary movies.

TTT: What kind of feedback have you been getting from Jaws fans and movie prop collectors?

NH: Fantastic feedback! Since exposure of my highly detailed Jaws: Estuary Attack diorama, I've been getting lots of e-mail from fans who have told me they have been waiting for Jaws collectibles of this quality for years and thanked me for taking the time to create them. I thought this was really sweet. Our debut Estuary Attack is certainly causing big waves, forgive the pun. We will be launching during September so for fans reading this article, all I can say is watch this space!

TTT: Indeed! Have any cast and/or crew members from Jaws commented on your work?

NH: No, not yet. But we are planning a special series of presentations through Universal.

TTT: Good luck with those. What future Jaws sculptures do you plan on doing next?

NH: We are already working on the following Jaws diorama projects:

  • All Banged Up! (Ben's Head and Boat
  • Hull Diorama with Internal L.E.D Light)
  • Shock in the Sand (Chrissy's Remains Diorama)
  • Sinking Severed Leg (Sailing Coach) Diorama
  • Just Ten More Minutes (Alex Kitner Diorama)
  • Holiday Roast (Jetty Tyre/Tire Diorama with L.E.D Light)
  • Not with Three He Can't (Chase Barrels in Action!)

TTT: Depending on how well your first wave of collectibles sell, do you see yourself doing something regarding the Orca?

NH: To be honest, I have already done sketches of Quint in the shark’s mouth on a detailed section of the Orca, as well as one of Quint being dragged under the water. It’s quite possible depending on how they go.

TTT: Will you be sculpting anything from the Jaws sequels?

NH: A few select diorama scenes from Jaws 2, but certainly not any of the sequels thereafter. Are you kidding me? (Laughs.)

TTT: So no Jaws: The Revenge “Ellen Brody stabbing shark with boat” diorama? Bummer. How can fans go about purchasing your work?

NH: Links will be available soon via our Facebook page and our 'Forever Jaws - The JAWS Appreciation Society' Web site when it surfaces shortly. People can also e-mail me with their interest to purchase any of our collectibles at NHumphreys@SculptoriaStudio.Com. Each diorama will be very limited in number, I just wanted you to know that. This makes them utterly, utterly valuable thereafter. We plan a range of supporting payment methods as well.

TTT: In addition to Jaws, what other movie collectibles do you plan to sculpt?

NH: Now, this is amazing news I have to tell you. As well as two CGI television series that I have created, designed and produced (Editor’s Note: The two TV series are The All Weathers and Skid, The Amazing Automobile), I am working on a range of long awaited and totally thrilling sculptures and dioramas from Close Encounters of the Third Kind. I am so very excited about these projects. In fact, I am having discussions about producing an ultra Limited Edition box set comprising of a full, glossy color hardback book by Philip Heeks, of which he has very kindly granted us exclusive, a DVD, music soundtrack and a stunning senior alien sculpture from the end sequence of the movie, all in one awesome CEOTTK box! Phil Heeks is a very talented guy and we are proud to have him on board with us on this thrilling project. His publication is amazing.

An early photo of one of Nigel's Close Encounters dioramas.

TTT: That sounds amazing! Will you continue to produce other movie replicas for collectors?

NH: Absolutely! I am designing some really hardcore projects for serious collectors, and I mean some really clever stuff. So, for all your dedicated readers all I can say is, "Watch the skies!"

Thanks for the interview, Nigel! Be sure to check out the Sculptoria Studio and Forever Jaws sites for updates regarding Nigel’s Jaws dioramas. Click here to see a preview video of the Estuary Attack diorama, and we’ll also be posting Sculptoria Studio collectibles announcements here on this blog as well.


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