That peculiar 1986 fantasy film, “Labyrinth,” featuring a bewigged David Bowie, a 14-year-old Jennifer Connelly and a crowd of grotesque Jim Henson creatures, lost money at the box office and disappointed Henson, who never made another movie.
But the film went on to become a cult classic. (Fans were outraged when a “reboot” was planned.) And 30 years later “Labyrinth” is enjoying a renaissance, with help of Atlanta’s Center for Puppetry Arts.
The center will open a “Labyrinth” exhibit this fall featuring creatures and costumes from the film, and will stage a Labyrinth-themed costume ball Sept. 1, during the opening night of Dragon-Con.
The ball will be staged at the Midtown puppetry center in its newly expanded museum, and should attract a cosplay-loving Con crowd.
“We’re pro-puppet,” said Kelsey Fritz, exhibitions director and head of the museum. “Whatever type of costume they want to rock, that is encouraged.”
Puppetry Arts personnel said scenes from the exhibit could become an “Easter egg” in a special 30th anniversary Blu-Ray edition of the movie.
About 25 new Labyrinth-related objects will be in the exhibit, including Bowie’s costume from the M.C. Escher-inspired stairway scene, goblins from the climactic battle and a plaster version of the Hoggle character’s head.
Some items from “Labyrinth” are already part of the center’s collection, including the fearless, whiskered Sir Didymus, a tiny fox-like creature who joins the protagonist Sarah in her quest.
“Labyrinth,” which was produced by George Lucas, received several screenings in Atlanta this year already, at the Center for Puppetry Arts and as part of the Atlanta Film Festival. All those screenings were planned before Bowie’s untimely death Jan. 10.
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