MI6 caught up with Oluf Hartvigson at Sideshow
Collectibles, to find out more about how the Pierce
Brosnan figures in the James Bond series are brought
Oluf W. Hartvigson Interview - Sculpting 007
5th December 2005
Sculpting for a toy company is a very unusual job, how did you arrive at
your current position?
After 7 1/2 years of college, including an MFA in sculpture
and 2 1/2 years of working in Hollywood, sculpting for animatronics
and make-up effects, I sculpted a model-kit of Spiderman
for a company called Horizon.
After a lot of work trying to get my work in front of the
right people, I finally made the right connections, they
liked my work and I have never looked back.
What has been the most rewarding figure you have worked
on to date?
The most rewarding figure I have sculpted to date would
have to be the 1/4 scale "Seven of Nine", then
the 1/4 Scale Brosnan Bond.
When you sit down to sculpt a figure what reference
materials do you use?
Depending on the vintage of the license, I usually use screen
grabs from the film for my reference. On rare occasions,
I am able to acquire photographs taken of the actor which
are always much more clear and accurate.
Right: 1/4 Pierce Brosnan as James
Oluf W Hartvigson, award winning master sculptor (MFA,
University of Michigan), began his freelance sculpting career
in California in 1993, where he sculpted; fine art, model
kits, animatronics and effects make-up. He also lead construction
of sets for commercials and films and was Assistant Art
Director on a Bruce Willis film.
Oluf began his relationship with Sideshow sculpting on
the Universal Studios Classic Monsters Action Figures series
in 1997. In 2001 he had the unique opportunity of working
in New Zealand for six weeks with the talented artists at
Oluf currently resides in Alaska (his favorite place to
work and play) where he sculpts using digital and traditional
How do you go about researching these materials?
The research is typically focused on the film specific to the
character I'm sculpting. When I feel the reference isn't clear
enough to supply the clarity to do the figure justice, I turn
to other films they've appeared in and glamour shots of them from
magazines I can find. I'm always surprised at how many actors
pop up in a thousand gossip mag.s and oddly enough the images
are often much clearer than the films.
Above: Oluf working the wax
Of all the Bond figures you have worked on which has been
the most changeling and why?
The most challenging Bond so far has been the Brosnan 007. Mr.
Brosnan has played Bond over several years and it is very important
to me that he be portrayed with a quasi "perfect" look.
After floating back and forth from extreme realism and idealization,
I think the figure captures the proper balance.
You sculpted the first female Bond figure in SideShow's range
how did this differ from your past figures?
Sculpting the female figure was like caving. When I started sculpting
on the Bond series figures, I was in blue skies and cool breezes,
just starting the journey. After many figures, I realized I was
deep into the tunnels and was anxious to find a cavern with a
breath of fresh air, that happened when Sideshow asked me to do
the Honor Blackman figure. It was great.
Premium Format ¼ Figures - Pierce Brosnan
as James Bond
Can you talk us through how your product life cycle
form start to end and your involvement? Tell us how these
processes have evolved with the newer ¼ scale Bond
figures? hat are the main differences between 1/6 scale
and ¼ other than size?
The biggest difference between the scales is the bodies
and pose-ability. While we are doing everything we can to
be accurate in both scales, we were more interested in a
quintessential pose and look for the 1/4 scale. The 1/6
scale has a stock articulated body with specific hands,
feet/shoes/boots and portrait, and the 1/4 scale gets the
same unique sculpts but additionally gets its own unique
Left: 1/4 Pierce Brosnan as James
Do you use different process or material when creating
the master figure?
I use Chavant P-40 for the initial sculpt, Pink Wax to add
all the detail and resin for the prototype
How did you come to be working on the ¼ scale
I asked if I could do another Bond and this was the one
they offered. Needless to say, I was very happy about it.
SideShow has created some extremely strong 1/6 scale Brosnan
over the last couple of years, how do you feel this new ¼
scale figure holds up against them?
I think the scale change gives it a more significant physical
presence, and my hope is that it is dead on with all the strengths
the 1/6 scale Brosnans embody.
What other classic Bond figures will you be working on in
the near future?
There is definitely another figure to come out very soon, but
I really can't comment on that yet….
Above: Oluf with 1/6 scale Brosnan head
How were you involved in the Bond series?
I've sculpted a large number of the Bonds and supporting
What was your first ever Bond experience?
Movie at a drive-in with the family when I was very
What did you think of the last film, "Die
I'm a sucker for action, drama and who-done-it's...I
What is your favourite Bond film?
"Tomorrow Never Dies"
Who is your favourite Bond?
Which Bond girl should come back?
What is your favourite Bond moment from the series?
Motorcycle jumping between buildings over the top
of a Helicopter.
Premium Format James Bond
Falls Interview - Sculpting 007
Interview - Character & Costume Design
¼ Scale Pierce Brosnan Preview
Many thanks to Oluf Hartvigson
and all at Sideshow Collectibles. Images courtesy Sideshow
Collectibles. Bond materials © Danjaq and United Artists.
Bond trademarks ™ Danjaq.