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The Robot

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Performer:
Dick Tufeld (voice)
LIS-robot01

The Robot appeared in the 1998 Creature Shop-effects movie Lost in Space. An updated version of the Robot from the original 1966 series, this mechanical being is part of the Rambler Crane series assigned to ships, and serves as companion and protector of Will Robinson.

As explained on the Creature Shop website, the two-ton robot was designed on CAD and remote controlled. The machine was "as powerful as a forklift and could travel at over 20mph." The Robot was puppeteered by the four man team of Simon Buckley, Phil Eason, Nigel Plaskitt, and John Wheatley.

Original Robot

Prior to the updated Creature Shop version, the Robot on the original series was considered as a model during the development stages of Sesame Street. Writer Bob Oksner, in brainstorming ideas for the framing scenes and host characters, pitched the following:

A robot, such as the one used in Lost in Space, could be part of the show. He would perform simple tasks like touching his hand to his ear or holding up his left hand and his right foot. Only most of the time, he would do it wrong and his nose would light up to signal a mistake. The robot could be made into a funny character, such as the absent-minded robot, who always forgets his instructions.[1]

Though the final product bore little resemblance to the Lost in Space robot, the concept for a mechanical character who gets things wrong eventually surfaced as Sam the Robot.

Sources

  1. Oksner, Bob. Letter to Children's Television Workshop. September 1, 1968

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