The model of the Loch Ness Monster created for a Sherlock Holmes movie has been found.
Recovered almost 50 years since it sank in the loch, the 30-feet monster was built for the movie “The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes,” directed by Billy Wilder and starring Sir Robert Stephens and Sir Christopher Lee. The model was sighted for the first time in images collected by an underwater robot.
BBC reports that the expedition, undertaken by Kongsberg Maritime, involved sending the drone into the loch in hopes of discovering traces of the lair of the monster Nessie. While the lair could not be found, the expedition resulted in the discovery of the monster, “but not the one many people might have expected,” Adrian Shine, leader of the Loch Ness & Morar Project, said, as reported by USA Today.
The model of the monster, created with a neck and two humps, was used in the filming of certain portions of the movie. “The director did not want the humps and asked that they be removed, despite warnings I suspect from the rest of the production that this would affect its buoyancy,” Shine added. “And the inevitable happened. The model sank.”
According to Kongsberg Maritime engineer Craig Wallace, the drone is used to typically find aircraft that have sank, as reported by the Australian Broadcasting Company. “The vehicle allows sonars to scan just a few meters from the loch floor, giving resolution several orders of magnitude greater than anything before,” Wallace said.
The expedition is being supported by VisitScotland and The Loch Ness Project.
Filmed in 1969, “The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes” hit theaters in 1970. In the film, the private detective is investigating the disappearance of an engineer, a case which involves him traveling to Loch Ness where he encounters the monster.
Wilder, the director of the movie, has been hailed as a prominent personality of Hollywood’s “golden age.” The central role of Holmes was played by Sir Robert Stephens, while the supporting roles of Dr Watson and Holmes’ brother, Mycroft Holmes, were played by Colin Blakely and Sir Christopher Lee.