The Walking Lucky Strike Cigarettes
On May 7th, Ray Harryhausen the veteran stop motion animator had past away. It was such a great loss that I felt I should do an article dedicated towards him with a commercial he was associated with. I could of done this article a month ago, but with the Star Trek articles in the way I had to postpone. So I decided to do it for this week since I already did a cigarette commercial last time. Besides feature length films, he also did documentaries and some commercials. This one was a demo and didn’t actually aired on TV, but was made back in mid-40’s and was Ray’s attempt to do three dimensional animation for TV commercials back when TV ads were new with the introduction of the first TV set that was going to placed into the market a couple years later. Two years another commercial was made by a different animator which looked similar to the one Ray did.
The commercial opens up with a living room where a pack of cigarettes starts dancing and the multiplies to two packs. Then multiplies to three packs and after a minute of a dance the packs lay rest on the table and then the cigarettes comes out of the packs and they dance instead. The whole sequence reminds me of the Porky Pig short titled “Wholly Smoke” which also featured dancing cigarettes. The cigarettes then form the letters: L.S.M.F.T. which then is revealed to be an abbreviation for Lucky Strikes Means Fine Tobacco. Then the cigarettes all go back inside the pack and thus the end of the demo ad. There are a couple other ads that are similar to this demo ad except they feature just dancing cigarettes and not cigarette packs. But still the same idea as Ray had with his vision on a cigarette commercial.
That’s all to say about this article, and I like to give my deepest condolences to those who knew Ray Harryhausen the best. He was a one of a kind special effects animator who was honored by many younger special effects artists who were either inspired by him or tribute to him in some way. Years from now the film Ray was involved with will be a big subject for various film classes and there’s also a hand full of his films that are yet to be released on Blu-ray so that way new generations can watch his works. For next time I will do an article on Winston Cigarettes with the Flintstones. Until then here are the commercials and a tribute video with James Rolfe of Cinemassacre.com made a year before the death of Ray Harryhausen. If I had to include just one video that tells how awesome Harryhausen was, I think Rolfe does it best cause he’s a huge expert on old cinema and video games.