The Dark Crystal

The Dark Crystal

Synopsis of Movie

“What was sundered and undone shall be whole… the two made one.”

The Dark Crystal was produced by the same puppetry wizards responsible for the Muppets, but this 1982 fantasy was much more J.R.R. Tolkien than it was Kermit the Frog. Jim Henson, Frank Oz and their army of puppeteers and voice artists put together an entire world of dark, mysterious creatures, casting them in a classic tale of good and evil.

1,000 years before the events in the film, a race of powerful beings called the urSkeks decided to purge all evil from their bodies. At the time of the “Great Conjunction” (when all three of the planet’s suns aligned), the urSkeks focused the united light through their powerful crystal, hoping to burn the evil out. Unfortunately, the evil merely separated from the good, creating two separate races—the peaceful Mystics and the wicked Skeksis. One of the Skeksis smashed the crystal, separating a shard and turning the crystal dark.

According to prophecy, an elf-like Gelfling would return the shard to the crystal at the next Great Convergence, putting an end to the Skeksis’ dark reign. To keep their power (and assure their immortality at the next Great Convergence), the vulture-like Skeksis sent their giant servants, the Garthims, to kill all Gelflings.

In the film’s present day, a Gelfling named Jen thinks he is the last of his race, and he sets out to fulfill his destiny. As his journey continues, the young lad discovers another Gelfling, a female named Kira, who joins his quest to heal the crystal. Kira’s hungry pet Fizzwig signs on as well, as does a gnarled old witch named Aughra. Even this united front, however, faces a daunting task in trying to outwit the dangerous Skeksis and their evil Chamberlain.

The Dark Crystal was indeed dark, but no more so than the average Brothers Grimm fable. That didn’t seem to matter to most audiences, however, who had opened their hearts to E.T. – The Extraterrestrial earlier in the year. A financial disappointment in theaters, The Dark Crystal still managed to build a relatively small, but very loyal base of fans, who continue to treasure this underappreciated puppet fantasy.

Movie Release History

1982 - The Dark Crystal

Movie Sub Categories


Movie Studio

Henson, Incorporated Television Company, Universal


Historian (voice)   John Baddeley
Jen (voice)   Stephen Garlick
Slave Master (voice)   David Buck
Chamberlain (voice)   Barry Dennen
Fizzgig (voice)  Percy Edwards
General (voice)  Michael Kilgarrif
Kira (voice)  Lisa Maxwell
Dying Mystic Master (movement) Brian Muehl
Skeksis Ornamentalist (movement and voice) Brian Muehl
Urzah  Brian Muehl
High Priest (voice) Jerry Nelson
Dying Emperor (voice)   Jerry Nelson
Narrator (voice)   Joseph O'Conor
Aughra (voice)   Billie Whitelaw
Scientist (movement and voice)  Steve Whitmire
Gourmand (voice)   Thick Wilson
Jen (movement) Jim Henson
High Priest (movement)  Jim Henson
Aughra (movement) Frank Oz
Chamberlain (movement)  Frank Oz
Additional Performer   Kiran Shah
Weaver Jean-Pierre Amiel
Numerologist Robbie Barnett
Landstrider   Robbie Barnett
Dying Master   Sean Barrett
Additional Performer   Peter Burroughs
Treasurer (voice)  Charles Collingwood
Additional Performer   Sadie Corre
Additional Performer   Mike Cotterill
Additional Performer   Malcolm Dixon
Additional Performer   Mike Edmonds
Additional Performer   Lisa Esson
Additional Performer   John Ghavan
General Dave Goelz
Dying Emperor   Dave Goelz
Goumand   Louise Gold
Healer  Dave Greenaway
Podling (voice)  Mike Iveria
Additional Performer  Annie Jones
Additional Performer   Natasha Knight
Scribe  Swim Lee Hus Levant
Podling (voice)   Patrick Monckton
Kira  Kathryn Mullen
Historian   Bob Payne
Alchemist   Toby Philpott
Additional Performer  Jack Purvis
Slave Master  Mike Quinn
Treasurer Timothy M. Rose
Additional Performer   Deep Roy
Additional Performer   Richard Slaughter
Cook Hugh Spirit
Landstrider   Hugh Spirit
Additional Performer   Gerald Staddon
Podling (voice)   Sue Wetherby
Charmer   Simon Williamson

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