Mighty Joe Young

[RKO Pictures/Walt Disney Pictures]

A legendary 15-foot tall mountain gorilla named Joe is taken to an animal sanctuary in California by a zoologist and a young woman whom he grew up with.

By 1998, audiences were far too sophisticated to settle for a film about a giant gorilla if the gorilla can’t do anything more than a man in a suit could. Mighty Joe Young had to leap from tall freeways, climb structures and wreak havoc on city streets.

That meant ILM’s digital hairdressers faced their biggest challenge to date: match a man in a gorilla suit with digital fur on an animated digital gorilla. Although ILM had groomed Jumaji’s digital lion using an early version of the studio’s hair and fur system, Mighty Joe’s fur needed to be a cut above in order to give the gorilla the proper bounce during his hair-raising race to freedom.

Director: Rob Underwood
ILM Visual Effects Supervisor: Jim Mitchell
ILM Animation Supervisor: Daniel Jenneatte
ILM Associate Visual Effects Supervisor: Carl Frederick
ILM Visual Effects Producer: Mark S. Miller
ILM Visual Effects Art Director: Forrest Leathers
ILM Studios: San Francisco