Alejandro Jodorowsky, a cult Franco-Chilean film-maker (an "acid western" - so think back to 1970 and picture that) and science-fiction comics writer who later became a spiritual guru (psycho-shamanism - just jumble together tarot cards, alchemy and Zen Buddhism together), has been honored by The Minor Planets Centre, a branch of the International Astronomical Union (IAU).

They have listed asteroid 261690 Jodorowsky at the request of the French astronomer who spotted the five-kilometer-wide object almost eight years ago. 261690 Jodorowsky orbits in the main asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, at an average distance of 470 million kilometres from the sun.

"I detected it on the evening of Christmas Eve in 2005, using an 80-centimetre telescope in Arizona that I direct over the internet from my home," Jean-Claude Merlin was quoted on Tuesday as saying in a press release by Les Humanoides Associes, Jodorowsky's French publishing house.

A screenshot from El Topo, which can be watched by absolutely no one outside art film students, who don't know any better. Credit and link:

Other "artistic" asteroids include 2362 Mark Twain, 2675 Tolkien, 8749 Beatles, 7934 Sinatra and 13070 Seanconnery.

Asteroid named after cult film-maker Alejandro Jodorowsky - AFP