Object Title

Sword - Stunt sword from the film 'Kingdom of Heaven'.

Sword - Stunt sword from the film 'Kingdom of Heaven'.

Date

2004

Object Number

IX.5634

Provenance

Purchased from The Prop Store, Hertfordshire, on 31st October 2013.

Physical Description

The hollow blade is made from steel to give the sword a lightweight feel and to enable the spring loaded inner blade to retract inside the outer so when pressed against something it takes little effort. The hilt, of rubber and resin, has a cream and brown painted grip, with the memorable red cross painted on the pommel and bears a decorative cross-guard also. The piece been give some intentional 'battle worn' distressing. It comes presented in a stunning custom built opening display with laser cut mount board featuring the movie title and stills. The hinged display measures approximately 1130 mm x 730 mm x 90 mm (44.5 in x 28.75 in x 3.5 in). The sword was built by the Kingdom of Heaven Special Effects (SFX) workshop, under Oscar and BAFTA award winner Neil Corbould, and designed by the famous film armourer Simon Atherton (founder of Zorg Limited) in 2004. Corbould's credits include The Fith Element (1997). Saving Private Ryan (1998) and Gladiator (2000). Atherton's film credits include many classics and range from Fantasy movies to Historical Epics such as Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981), Aliens (1986), Braveheart (1995), Gladiator (2000) and Robin Hood (2010). Both have worked for many of the leading directors' of the late 20th and 21st century including Luc Besson, Bryan Singer, Ridley Scott and Steven Spielberg. The sword also comes with a Prop Store Certificate of Authenticity. Atherton and the Workshop created thousands of weapons, but two swords were of special significance: Godfrey's sword, which is inherited by his son, Balian; and Saladin's sword. 'The blades (of Godfrey's swords) were made in aluminium, which is lighter and safer than other metals. It took me a solid week to make the first one, and there are five in all, different weights and sizes.' (Casting the Kingdom). Atherton put a 'lot of time into' designing the 'Ibelin' sword, as it became known, (Landau: 151) and they ended up making five 'Godfrey' swords in all. 'There are slightly shorter ones for certain fight sequences, the very shiny 'hero' ones, and the lightweight. And a specific one for riding.' (Landau: 151). Atherton designed the 'hero' swords that this was built to emulate though only the hilt of this sword itself was crafted by the workshop, who carried out the moulding and made the 'SFX ruber painted grip' (Simon Atherton: Pers. Com 24/09/2013) which was then married to the specially constructed blade, made of two pieces of steel welded together with its internal mechanism, built by Neal Corbould's Special Effects Ltd. workshop. References used: Landau, Diana (Ed.), Kingdom of Heaven: The Ridley Scott Film and the History Behind the Film, London, Pocket Books Ltd, 2005. Casting the Kingdom http://www.writingstudio.co.za/page667.html

Associations

Places England