If you’ve been on the interwebs this week, you may have come across a little ventriloquist dummy of Timothée Chalamet that has been described as “a thing of nightmares” and “cursed.” Well, the artist behind the creation spoke out and honestly, please leave him alone because he’s just a Timmy stan like the rest of us trying to put wholesome art out into the world.
Chris Alan spoke to Vulture about the doll, the harness, the backlash, the exorbitant price tag ($122,795 because Timmy’s birthday is December 27, 1995) and his undying love for Timothée Chalamet. This man learned how to sew for Timothée Chalamet! Would YOU learn how to sew for Timothée Chalamet? Didn’t think so.
Chris explained that the doll was born from a shared love for Timothée with his neighbour. When she moved to New Zealand, he wanted to make her a doll as a gift, but it took him a little longer than expected—September to June, to be exact.
“We had this mutual thing for him; we both thought he was amazing, so talented. I’d done other celebrities in the past, and I said I should do a little Timmy—we call him Timmy,” Alan said.
He talked through the doll-making process in detail (it’s so many steps!) and the especially difficult work of making the outfit, including the Golden Globes harness that launched a thousand memes. Alan said since he doesn’t really know how to sew (*Tim Gunn gasp*), he watched hours of Project Runway for encouragement.
“The outfit was kind of a nightmare… I basically played Project Runway on a loop in the background as I was doing it, to keep me going and inspire me: You can do this! You can do this crazy outfit, you’ll be fine!” he said. “The harness, we’d seen it on the runway, but on the carpet we hadn’t seen anything like that. I loooove red carpets. I’m a typical gay man; I’m all over the awards shows.”
As far as the haters are concerned, Alan was a little shocked by the vitriol and wanted to point out that the dummy is meant to be more of a caricature than a perfect replica (but seriously, the side-by-sides look pretty good to us).
“It’s not necessarily supposed to be a perfect likeness. It’s not a portrait, per se, it’s more of a caricature. It’s meant to be fun. Things are exaggerated!” he said. “His jawline is clearly not as pronounced as I made it… You accentuate those things in a caricature. Yes, I want it to be recognizable, but for people to be so nasty — that’s what I wasn’t really expecting.”
He added that it’s unusual for his dolls to get such negative feedback (after all, he made ones for Kelly Ripa and Anderson Cooper).
“I’m a kind of quiet person, believe it or not, and I’m so used to my friends and acquaintances seeing these [dummies] and understanding where I’m coming from,” Alan said. “I don’t go out and perform or anything. I’ve just always thought the art form of the dummies themselves was really neat.”
But yes, he gets it’s creepy.
“As far as the creepy factor, I completely get it. I embrace that,” he said.
So it may be creepy and it may not look exactly like Timothée but Chris Alan put months into creating this masterpiece of craftsmanship and that demands respect.