Dragon's Lair was released in June of 1983, but
was a full 6 years in the making. It was created by Rick Dyer of Advanced
Microcomputer Systems (AMS), Don Bluth of Bluth Studios, and Cinematronics.
For Dragon's Lair, Bluth Studios produced 22 minutes
of full animation at a cost of 1.3 million dollars. To
keep the cost as low as possible, they decided not to hire professional voice actors. Instead
they all pitched in and did the voices themselves. Sound engineer Dan
Molina was the voice of Dirk the Daring, and Vera Lanpher, head of assistant
animators, was the voice of Princess Daphne. The narrator was Michael Rye, and the
musical score was created by Christopher Stone.
Dragon's Lair was a hit
from the start. With over 30 million dollars in sales in the first 40 days, and grossing more than
32 million dollars in the first eight months in the arcades, it seemed unstoppable. A line of
merchandise was issued featuring Dirk and Daphne, and the Marvel Studio produced a
Saturday-morning TV-show based on the game. The TV show, produced by Ruby Spears,
debuted in the fall of 1984 on ABC and lasted only 1 season. There was also a
Dragon's Lair feature film that was planned, storyboarded, and written in 1984, but never yet put
into production. The film was to be called Dragon's Lair: The Legend, exploring
the background of Dirk & how he meets Daphne, as a darker, more developed story.