09 February 2021

Troll Country

In 1988, Maelstrom opened its doors, beckoning guests to board Viking longship and behold the beauty and charm of Norway. The attraction did just that until September of 2014 when it was shuttered to make way for Frozen Ever After. The memorable moments of attraction come one after another, making it difficult to choose just one scene as iconic. However, the three-headed troll who cast their magic on the invading guests, sending them “back, back, over the falls,” ranks pretty high up there.

I love finding the behind the scene glimpses of how such iconic moments come together. Here we see Peter Kermode working on the eight-foot tall clay model of the bothersome troll, back when the attraction was going to be known as SeaVenture.
Kermode was one of the premiere sculptors at Imagineering, taking over the from the renowned Blaine Gibson when he retired he 1983. Trolls weren’t his entire life though, Kermode’s work can be seen in parks all around the globe, in the form of everything from pirate wenches to bears, and he even worked alongside Don Chandler and Joe Kaba to bring Bruce the shark to life for the movie Jaws.
Back to the photo of Kermode and the three-headed troll, you can really see the detail on their faces that would be hard to catch glimpses of as your longship was thrown from side to side, and then backwards, during your brief encounter. Once the full beards, hair, shrubbery, and lighting effects were added, many of these details would be obscured. Warts, wrinkles, snarls, ears, and all, they strike an imposing figure that was definitely not to be trifled with.

1 comment:

Mini-V said...

I miss the trolls. They never left me stranded on the attraction like a certain princess has.