“Zee ZF-1, she is done.” – Adam Savage finally holding his complete ZF-1 replica.
The Fifth Element, Luc Besson’s quirky sci-fi masterpiece, is one of those films that can be rewatched over and over. The elements of the film, from the characters—Rhuby Rhod, pop POP POP—to the action to the worlds to the weapons are all fun, distinctive and gorgeously crafted, which is probably the reason it took Adam Savage, former MythBusters mafia leader-turned-Tested editor and cosplay master, 17 years to complete a prop replica of the Zorg ZF-1 pod weapon.
In the film, the Zorg ZF-1 (which seems to sometimes carry the Zorg prefix and sometimes not), is demonstrated by central antagonist Jean-Baptiste Emanuel Zorg (Gary Oldman) as the be-all and end-all of handheld weapons. The Zorg ZF-1 has—deep breath—a titanium recharger, a 3,000 round clip, a “replay” button, a rocket launcher, an arrow launcher, a “famous” net launcher, a flamethrower, and an “ice cube system” that seems to just be there to freeze things you’ve already killed.
Savage’s Zorg ZF-1 has all of those components. Or at least replicas of those components.
In the video, which was posted to Tested, Savage outlines the process he went through in order to duplicate the movie prop, including “a tremendous amount of time doing some really detailed 3-D drawings,” and buying a copy of Besson’s film in German—Das fünfte Element—in order to gain access to some BTS footage of the prop weapon being dismantled.
The love Savage put into the prop weapon clearly shows though, as it is absolutely indistinguishable from the (in-use) version in the film. Savage’s replica Zorg ZF-1 has everything from the yellow button to the rocket LED to the targeting computer to the screen in the back to, of course, “the little red button.” You know, the little red button any of we mere mortals would have used a long time ago if we had tried to build one of these things.
What do you think about Savage’s insane 17-year Zorg ZF-1 build? And what prop would you like to see receive this kind of attention next? Let us know in the comments below!
Here’s what to expect from Luc Besson’s next movie, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets