Back in June I spoke with a woman named Laura Vaughn about how the prosthetic limb of Mad Max: Fury Road leading lady Imperator Furiosa was a triumph of both film making and the portrayal of amputees on screen. An amputee herself, Furiosa was a character Vaughn had never seen on screen before, and had never felt so connected to. “I just get Furiosa,” Vaughn told me, “and I feel like she gets me.”
Just a few weeks after Fury Road came out, Vaughn was already hitting convention floors as Furiosa. Vaughn was probably the most accurate Furiosa out there, and an homage to the transformative portrayal in the movie.
Only one thing was missing: Furiosa’s arm.
A few weeks ago, designer Michelle Sleeper was looking to start one of her “holy grail” projects: “a T-800 Endo Arm, as an actual prosthetic for an amputee,” she writes in a Replica Props Forum thread. But while talking with a friend about who would be perfect for the arm, Sleeper was introduced to Vaughn, and though Vaughn was enthusiastic about the Endo Arm, Sleeper says, the gears quickly shifted to Furiosa, the perfect match of opportunity and passion.
The goal was to deliver Furiosa’s arm to Vaughn at last week’s Dragon Con in Atlanta, and Sleeper definitely delivered.
After taking a 3D scan of Vaughn with an Xbox Kinetic and a plaster mold of her limb, Sleeper began 3D printing the actual parts of Furiosa’s metal appendage. Soon, the prosthetic started taking real shape and color.
Making sure that the arm actually fit Vaughn and that it wasn’t too heavy for long stints of awesome cosplay, Sleeper then set about finishing the finer details: shaping and weathering the arm and adding the bits and pieces indicative of a barren, gasoline-hungry wasteland. She went above and beyond — the presentation of the finished arm was far from mediocre.
And just a few days ago, Sleeper posted in the thread the fruits of her labor. Needless to say, Vaughn looks absolutely perfect.
You can see more images of the build over at Replica Prop Forum.