Specializing in:
Conceptual Design, Illustration, Sculpture, 
Specialty Costumes, Creature Suits & Puppets, Hand Props, 
Museum Mannequins, Make-up & Make-up Effects

c/o 21115 Devonshire Street, #109, Chatsworth, California  91311 l  (a.r.r.) (818) 886-MKUP (6587)     (818) 709-MKUP (6587) FAX
e-mail: monstermaker@makeupandmonsters.com



Brian Penikas comments about
Patterson, Bigfoot, and John Chambers

Hello folks.   With all of the media activity swarming around recent Bigfoot events, it has been brought to my attention
that several "Bigfoot-believers" groups and websites are circulating an old 1997 commentary of mine,
conveniently edited to support their agendas.

We all know how easily things get copied and pasted (and blown out of proportion) on the web, so to set the record straight,
I've posted one of those "conveniently edited" articles here, and have put back my comments (noted in RED) that
have over the years mysteriously disappeared from the original text.

November 1, 1997
© CNI News Agency

Oscar-winning Hollywood special effects wizard, John "Planet of the Apes" Chambers, has been alleged by rumor for years to be responsible for creating a costume featured in the famous Bigfoot film footage shot by Roger Patterson in 1967. The rumor was masterminded allegedly by film director John Landis and Baker perpetrated the advancement of the rumor, which was totally false in order to promote Chambers reputation. This was then believed and subsequently noted to be supported bynumerous artists within the special effects industry. 

However, new information from Brian Penikas, Creative Director for a company called Make-up and Monsters, puts to rest the theory that Chambers had any hand in the Patterson film. Penikas writes:

"Recently my crew and I were involved in a surprise 75th birthday tribute to Mr. Chambers, for which 9 of us recreated a parody skit re-enacting characters from the Ape movies.  Mr. Chambers and the rest of the guests, many of whom were survivors of the Apes saga, were wonderfully surprised."

"Thanx to a quick introduction from writer Scott Essman, I had only met Mr. Chambers briefly prior to the surprise party, and the opportunity to discuss the 'suit' rumor was not high on my agenda. This past Saturday [October 25, 1997], however, the cast of the Apes birthday skit went back (sans costumes and makeup) to visit with Mr. Chambers and his wife.  This was our chance to truly and finally confront Mr. Chambers about these rumors and stories about him being involved in the Patterson film project."

"Mr. Chambers told his story, on video tape, to us to set the record straight.  I now have pictures of the suit that Chambers did make and you can rest assured that it is NOT the famous Patterson Bigfoot.  In fact, it's not a suit AT ALL.  It is an 8 foot tall plaster dummy of actor Richard 'Jaws' Keil that was built (in 4 days) as a prop for a travelling carnival to be billed as 'Bigfoot's Body' or some such sideshow attraction, and was apparently displayed in a coffin.  That's all.  Just a solid, 800-pound prop." 

Brian's missing comment: "When pressed by Essman during the taped interview, John said, 'I can honestly say, without laughing, that I had nothing to do with that [the Patterson] film.'  Then he cracked a slight smile and let out a little chuckle."

"Mr. Chambers did say (in regards to the Patterson footage) that he and his crew wished they had done it, because they would have done it differently. I believe his exact words were, jokingly, 'We could've done better.' "

Missing comment: (can't remember what I said here, but I know there was more.)

So there you have it... We can all smile with relief that the Patterson footage is still the most convincing proof of our great folk legend's existence, and that it still has not been debunked. "I want that film to be real just as much as the next guy," Penikas said in conclusion. More missing comments: (I do remember my concluding comment was a little more in-depth than this as I do not usually end a statement with an incomplete thought. I don't remember in detail what I said exactly.  Something about how intriguing the whole Patterson film was to me while growing up and how cool it would be if the Patterson creature was indeed real, I think.).

I felt it necessary to at least let the viewers know that my 1997 quotes that have been copied and recopied, pasted and repasted, throughout the internet, were not complete.  Whether they were intentionally "edited" to support specific views, I don't know.  I do know that there was more to my original comments than many of the sites are posting.

Thank you for reading.

Brian Penikas 
Member: IATSE Make-up & Hairstylists Local 706 
Member :S.A.G.
Member: Academy of Television Arts & Sciences
August 18th, 2008 

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