Robert T. McCall worked on an early version of Disney's The Black Hole back in 1975 when it was called Space Probe 1, Mc Call a superb Space Artist helped NASA design the Space Shuttle. When he signed up to work on the film they had no director, later British director John Hough who directed the films The Legend of Hell House and Escape to Witch Mountain joined the production. McCall did the initial concepts for the 'Cygnus' Spaceship, then called the 'Centaurus', as you can see from the top illustration his design is pretty much the finished film ship, except Peter Ellenshaw made the ships surface from girder work. McCall wasn't happy with the changes to his work it was reported. His other concepts for the 'Palomino' Spaceship and 'Vincent' the films main droid were changed a lot from his original concept work. The final film of The Black Hole was directed by Gary Nelson, and contained over 550 visual effects shots, including over 150 matte paintings.Peter Ellenshaw came out of a 10 year retirement to work on the film because Disney thought the Special FX to be so crucial to the success of the movie. Also at the time of its release, the movie featured the longest computer graphics sequence in a movie.
The above picture is the bridge of the 'Cygnus' very similar to the final film in that it has a central elevator shaft and a spacious layout, but a bit less stylized than the final set.
This original design for the 'Palomino' has a lot of the elements of the 'Rebel Blockade Runner' from Star Wars about it, especially the rear engine area. I like this design a lot better that the final ship in the movie which looks a bit cramped for such a long voyage
The final 'Vincent' robot in the movie wasn't bad but a lot of people disliked those cartoon style eyes that he had, originally he was due to have electronic looking eyes but they failed to work on set so they were replaced early inproduction, again McCall's concept show a much bigger and different design for the robot.
Visit Robert T. McCall's site here http://mccallstudios.com/