"It was clear that from this moment onward, for me, the cinema had somehow become obsolete, instantaneously, and that this tiny bug demarcated the last exposed frame in our film."
A small midge flew into Curtis' eye whilst we were shooting the last scene of The Thing. We decided to preserve the memento mori by encasing it in gold, using an electron microscopy specimen preparation technique called gold sputtering. This involves coating organic specimens in a thin layer of gold prior to the high resolution imaging of SEM, after which the material specimens are usually discarded in favour of the information-laden images they produce. Instead of completing this process, we removed our fly at the gold-sputter stage. With thanks to Steve Barlow and the San Diego State University EM Facility