The Cosmic Key
Movie Props
Cartoon Series:
Producer: Cannon Group
Year: 1987
Author: Boss Film Studios

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The Cosmic Key
The Cosmic Key

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The Cosmic Key was the most complex prop produced for the big screen version of Masters of the Universe. Billy Barty, the dwarf actor who played Gwildor, would ‘play’ the Cosmic Key as a sort of technological, yet seemingly magical musical instrument as it would instantly open a dimensional portal to anywhere in the galaxy. When he played the instrument in the film celestial music would emanate as its arms spread open and spun around while numerous lights blinked. The piece stands 20 inches (about 51 centimeters) tall and is constructed of steel, aluminum, brass, resin, and filled with motors, gears and motion control electronics.

Richard Edlund, who was head of Boss Film Studios, was contracted to make most of the props in Masters of the Universe as well as create the visual effects for the film. Edlund states this highly complex prop cost more than $150,000 to create and since it would sometimes malfunction on set, he had a “Cosmic Key Team” on hand to make emergency repairs and adjustments to ensure its proper function.
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