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Photograph by Sam Murphy

FAUX FLAMES

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Make realistic fake fire, using fabric, a fan, and some LEDs.

By William Gurstelle

Disneyland’s Pirates of the Caribbean ride, the last attraction that Walt Disney himself had a hand in designing, is well known among stagecraft buffs for its use of extravagant, realistic faux fire. At the climax of the tale, the village of Isla Tesoro is set aflame by drunken animatronic pirates led by the fearsome Hector Barbossa; the entire scene is filled with red-orange, glowing flames mimicking a five-alarm fire.

With so ...

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