Warner Bros. Special Effects Department on Stage 5 in Burbank.

by John Waco Jr August. 15, 2017 873 views

I was never one to value money over time. Growing up in Los Angeles life was more about community than profit. My parents stressed achievement, but championed leisure. My sister and I were pushed to make straight A’s, earning annual road trip vacations to diverse locales—beautiful Fort Walton Beach, Florida, historic Williamsburg, Virginia, or rustic Bangor, Maine. Our dollar seemed to stretch further than other families’. When my sister became a lawyer, I drifted slowly into the arts. A long side working has a sound engineer, I got a part time job as a Unit Stills Photographer Stills includes close-ups of the actors and crew, and wide shots of the crew shooting the action, this work ran side by side with me on the film set as a sound engineer making movies.

that's me paying for the drinks

that's me paying for the drinks

 Stage 5 in Burbank

Stage 5 in Burbank

I had just turn twenty and it was my first day at work was at gate-2, stage-5, Warner Bros. Special Effects Department on Stage 5 in Burbank. Yawning myself awake in an empty film set, that impossibility disappeared. So what if there was sacrifice? Waking up with a pumping adrenal gland wasn’t ideal, but it was better than lying in bed knowing your hours were auctioned off to a status quo you never wanted in the first place. After graduating as an electrical engineer from California Institute of Technology I was hired by Byron Haskin, ASC, and head of the Warner Bros. Special Effects Department on Stage 5 in Burbank. Since this was the largest such department in the movie business, I was able to work with some of the top cinematographers in the effects field, such as ASC fellows Edwin DuPar, Hans Koenekamp and Warren Lynch. When Warner Bros. purchased First National's studio in Burbank, California, I signed a contract and remained with the studio on and off for the next 40 years.

that's me on the right

that's me on the right

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Dannii L 3 years, 5 months ago

Love the b&w effect. Thanks for sharing your story, I bet you have a few ;-)

3 years, 5 months ago Edited
Heike 3 years, 5 months ago

It's so cool to go back in time with your photos !

3 years, 5 months ago Edited
Pete Fitzgetald 3 years, 5 months ago

I love the Go-Go's photo, all 3 of these make you feel like you are there. I like the black and white.

3 years, 5 months ago Edited
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