Within the realm of visual film effects, stop-motion animation is one of the most revered, with a lineage as old as cinema itself. Georges Méliès, Willis O'Brien, Ray Harryhausen-these masters of special effects didn't simply make miniatures move, they melded them into a film's action with seamless union. Phil Tippett, founder of Berkeley's renowned Tippett Studio, is a contemporary master of effects animation whose creature development and effects integration have undeniably advanced the craft. Fresh out of the commercial sector, where he worked on campaigns such as the Pillsbury Doughboy and the Jolly Green Giant, Tippett found himself in the middle of the Star Wars epic, creating a stop-motion chess scene for the maiden film and the Imperial Walkers for The Empire Strikes Back. As head of the Industrial Light and Magic creature shop, he worked on Return of the Jedi, designing the much-adored Jabba the Hutt. Soon after, Tippett teamed up with director Paul Verhoeven to engineer the live-action props in Robocop, including the ED-209 drone. In 1991, Steven Spielberg approached Tippett to oversee the dinosaur animation for Jurassic Park. Upon hearing that this would be computer-generated imagery, Tippett uttered, “I think I'm extinct,” and took the job, for which he eventually won an Academy Award. Finally running his own effects house, Tippett's next great advance came as another challenge from Paul Verhoeven: to create the bug battles for Starship Troopers. This placed Phil Tippett (and his studio) firmly in the realm of digital filmmaking, where he has thrived ever since.