For more photos see our slideshow, Doctor Who Convention @ The Marriott Los Angeles Airport
Paul J. Salamoff is a former special-effects artist from Burbank who now works as a writer and producer. He's also the owner of the TARDIS console from the 1996 Doctor Who television movie starring Paul McGann. This weekend, he unveiled the refurbished prop at Los Angeles' annual gathering of Whovians, Gallifrey One.
It makes sense that Salamoff, who gave the prop new life with the help of two other fans, would choose Gallifrey One for the big reveal. A Doctor Who aficionado since childhood, Salamoff has been attending the convention for at least 15 years. While this convention still flies a little under the media radar, Gallifrey One is becoming better known as more and more people in the U.S. are obsessing over the long-running British sci-fi franchise, which airs on BBC America.
For its 23rd annual show, Gallifrey One reunited the cast of the 1996 movie, making Salamoff's console all the more important. Though he has owned the spectacular prop for five years, Salamoff and friends refurbished it in three months specifically for this event. Their goal was to turn the console into an interactive piece that would wow convention attendees.
"I've always been very open about letting Doctor Who fans come and see it," Salamoff says. "I knew what it meant to own a piece of history like this."
It was a long, arduous process that one of Salamoff's cohorts documented on his blog, but the response was worth it. The eighth Doctor himself, McGann, stopped by with his son to play with some of the controls.