Replica "Zoltar Speaks" Fortune Teller Demo (inspired by 1988 film "big")





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Uploaded on Jan 24, 2010

You can read the full story about the design and construction of this machine at http://www.technitoys.com/?p=3111

I finally got around to making a video of this little project that I completed in 2008. As a collector of old slot and penny arcade machines from the '30s and '40s, I thought that the original fortune teller appearing in the 1988 film "big" was the most visually interesting piece I had ever seen. To the best of my knowledge, the original fortune teller existed only as a movie prop, and was never a real production unit, so I built one in my basement shop. It is 8 1/2 feet tall and comes in at over 600 pounds. This was done entirely by looking at screen captures from the DVD and by guessing at the internal mechanisms and parts that I could not see. It is fully functional and operates just as you see here, including the music and sound effects.

I wrote a short story about this for the Homebrew feature in MAKE magazine volume 21, available January 19, 2010. I hope to post another video shortly showing a slideshow of the construction process for anyone who may be interested in the DIY project side of it.

I thought it would be fun to do this demonstration video using roughly the same camera shots and cuts from the film, so it may look vaguely familiar to some.

This video was taped at Kilroys (www.kilroysusa.com) in the warehouse district of Minneapolis, which is one of the most fascinating stores to visit if you are into coin-op machines and unusual items of this nature.

I would be interested in hearing from anyone that has any information about the original machine used in the film. I've never heard anything about it except there appears to be a slightly different version ( perhaps a second backup prop) that occasionally makes appearances in commercials for the Fox Legacy show on the Fox Movie Channel.


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