Business Insider Edition

People are losing it over a 'sinister' Timothée Chalamet doll that you can buy for R1.8 million

Daniel Boan , Business Insider US
 Jun 14, 2019, 02:21 PM
This Timothée Chalamet ventriloquist dummy is dividing the internet.
  • A ventriloquist figure modelled after Timothée Chalamet is dividing the internet.
  • Some have called it "sinister," while others think it looks just like the actor.
  • Some also took issue with its $122,795 (R1.8 million) price tag on eBay.
  • The artist behind the figure told INSIDER that the response has been overwhelming, though the price was "really a joke".
  • For more stories, go to Business Insider SA.

Timothée Chalamet received nearly universal acclaim for his role in "Call Me By Your Name," but a ventriloquist doll that was made in his likeness has received more of a mixed response.

The figure was posted on eBay and has since made its way all over the internet, both for its appearance and starting bid of $122,795 (R1.8 million).

The eBay listing that divided the internet.

Some have called the creation "creepy" and "really sinister."

Some have called the dummy "really sinister."

Others think it's a fairly accuraterepresentation of Chalamet, especially since it is dressed in a recreation of his Louis Vuitton harness from the 2019 Golden Globe Awards.

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 10: Timothée Chalamet
(Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)

Others think it looks just like the actor.

The man behind the doll, Chris Alan, told INSIDER that it has been 'overwhelming' to see his creation take over the internet

"People can be very cruel online... Twitter especially," he told us. "My response to those who criticize the likeness is always the same... 'You are more than welcome to make a better one.'"

Though the negative comments were overwhelming, he acknowledges the unsettling quality ventriloquist dummies may have.

"I embrace the creepy factor of the dummies, I think that's kind of funny," he said. " I have always loved the art form. I'm not a ventriloquist at all, I've just always appreciated the art of making one from nothing."

The dummy is dressed in a recreation of Chalamet's Louis Vuitton harness.

Alan says that dummies should be seen as artistic "exaggerated" renderings of the people they are supposed to represent.

"People expect it to be an exact replica of Chalamet, but that's not the point," he said. "It's a caricature, so his jawline, nose, eyebrows, etc. are meant to be exaggerated."

Aside from the dummy's appearance, some people also had questions about the listings starting bid of $122,795.00 (R1.8 million), especially since the listing states: "Sorry, due to the very low price on this, stand is not included."

Alan told INSIDER the price is "really a joke," and is actually just the actor's birthday, December 27, 1995. He added that eventually he wants the dummy to make its way to Chalamet himself.

"Ultimately, it would be cool to give the dummy to Chalamet (or his parents) and by listing it at an insane price, I'm rather certain no one will buy it," he said. "Although, if they did, I could certainly make another for Chalamet."

Alan says he taught himself how to make dummies by watching YouTube tutorials, and handcrafts everything from the sculpting to the mold-making. He makes the dolls as a hobby, and previously went viral for creating dummies that looked like Anderson Cooper and Kelly Ripa.

The artist told INSIDER that he plans on continuing to make dummies of celebrities he respects (Melissa McCarthy is in the works), with a goal of one day having them displayed in a gallery.

Though he says he's received negative comments along the lines of "I wouldn't even give you 20 bucks for that," Alan told us he isn't letting the criticism get to him.

"It amazes me that people would go out of their way, just to be mean to someone," he said. "I just roll my eyes and go back to sculpting!"

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