Auction: V.I.N.CENT robot prop from 1979's Black Hole

Zack sez, "For a starting bid of a mere $40,000, you can own the adorable Roddy McDowell-voiced robot from the eerie, somewhat incomprehensible 1979 Disney SF flick THE BLACK HOLE. The full-sized model includes lights, an internal motor to make the robot’s head move, and a certificate of authenticity from the Disney Company. Sadly, there… READ THE REST

An excellent example of trying to make an entire film based on a trendy title. But hey, if Robert Forster hadn’t been in The Black Hole, he probably wouldn’t have been cast in Supernova.

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V.I.N.CENT is one of us.


Silly trivia about this movie:

It was the first movie put out with the ‘Disney’ name on it with a PG rating. All Disney movies 'til then were rated G. Other non-G films put out by the company at the time were under the ‘Buena Vista Pictures’ name.

It had one of the earliest instances of actual computer graphics used in a mainstream film.

Maximillian scared the behoosis out of me when I was 11. I never quite understood the movie, and on rewatching it several years ago, it still doesn’t make any sense.


Paving the way for Dragonslayer in 1981, which was remarkably dark for a Disney film.

Somewhat incomprehensible? Maybe if you were a really little kid. It seemed fairly straightforward to me at the time. Maximillian was scary as fuck, though. Even now, that is a fantastic bit of design.

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Only somewhat off topic:

Dragonslayer was the first non-Lucas movie worked on at Industrial Light & Magic. George wanted to disband the company after Empire (as was, and is, common for film work), but the crew asked for a chance to get outside work to stay in business and keep the optical techs working. The stop-motion dragon was some of Phil Tippet’s finest animation, and used similar “Go-Motion” technology as the AT-AT’s.

I freakin’ LOVE Dragonslayer.


In the words of Lo Pan, “Indeed!”

I still consider that the best dragon movie yet made.

I watched it again a couple of years ago. The visuals hold up beautifully and the film is still funny and incisive.

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I’ve said this before, but this movie haunted me like few others. It was so creepy.The crew/robots and their funeral ceremony was so very sad.


As an adult I recognize the flaws, but as a child I was spellbound by this film. I was six, and hadn’t ever seen a film that dealt with concepts such as murder, slavery, alternate dimensions, and the depiction of heaven and hell.


I saw it as an adult and I remember being a bit annoyed at the “cutesy” stuff like “Bob” (voiced by Slim Pickens If memory serves. But there was something about the set design or size of it that made it seem…empty. The vastness of space seemed real. I found the Earnest Borgnigne character annoying too. He carried the idiot ball too often. I did like . Yvette Mimieux and Schell.


“Black Hole” was one weird, yet nifty, movie. For the former nothing beats the sudden right-angle turn into the silliness of the “Robot Rec-room”: what do robots do when they’re off work anyway? For the latter consider that this was one of the first SF movies where the spaceship is travelling in the opposite direction to the thrust of its drives as it decelerates. In almost every other movie you always travel in the direction that your engines are pushing you and if the engine stops your spaceship stops - and sometimes falls out of the sky!

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in the battle of the ‘brave little robots which could’ V.I.N.Cent kicks Wall.E’s ass.

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When B.O.B. died I sobbed like crazy. My aunt took me, and for some odd reason I sat in another part of the theater from her, so she had no idea. I stopped crying by the end of the movie, but then during the car ride home she said, “That was so sad when that old robot died” and I suddenly started bawling again. She nearly went off the road asking, “What’d I say?”

In spite of the emotional trauma I drove my parents nuts with my obsession over this film for months.

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B.O.B. was so much better. I was distraught when he died on the big screen.

Regarding Maximillian, we found his head being used as a planter at a prop shop. I’ve been searching all day for the photo of me wearing the head but I cannot find it! If I do I’ll post it or just take another sometime. Rest easy fans, the head has been adopted and is sitting safely on top of a TV in Pasadena.


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