Theodore and Howard Lydecker worked in the Hollywood film industry long before the advent of computer generated imagery (CGI). In those days, exciting and realistic action scenes had to be filmed in real time. Known throughout the industry as the "Miniature Men," they were in fact giants in their field of creating detailed scale model ships, trains, planes, and automobiles. While these carefully crafted models performed on large-scale landscapes or backlot water tanks, all manner of mayhem and chaos would be inflicted upon them as the cameras rolled at carefully calculated film speeds. The Lydeckers produced some of the most thrilling and authentic action sequences on a shoestring budget. Primarily remembered for their outstanding visual effects in the Republic Pictures cliffhanger serials, they were often required (it was their job) to enhance the studio's feature films. When the script called for spectacular destruction, the Lydeckers delivered onscreen production value with economy the executives of the other picture studios could only imagine. This book presents an overview and some illustrated remembrances of the "Legendary Lydecker Brothers" and their outstanding contribution to special visual effects. (196 Pages)
About the Author
Jan's published book works include "Speeding Bullet, The Life And Bizarre Death of George Reeves," co-author of "Behind The Crimson Cape, The Cinema of George Reeves" with Steve Randisi. Jan made significant contributions in "Harvey Kubernik's, Canyon of Dreams, The Magic And The Music of Laurel Canyon" published in 2009. Jan has decades of periodical contributions and articles that include published works in such magazines as American Cinematographer, FilmFax, Cult Movies and Television Chronicles, Little Shop of Horrors. He was also sought after by the BBC for an interview in 2008 concerning the history of Laurel Canyon and music scene in Southern California and again by BBC 2 in May of 2010 which was broadcast in August of 2010. Jan was seen as a recurring guest on "Sinister Cinema" from 1986-88. From the 80s to mid 90s he was a consultant to the Universal Laser Disc Division. He was credited on the sci-fi thriller "Creature" (1985), Trans World Productions for Special Effects & Creature Wrangler. 1999 to 2000 saw Henderson appearing on "Mysteries & Scandals" and "A&E Biography" George Reeves episodes. He worked at Don Post Studios, 1977-78, as a maskmaker for Star Wars, Disney Characters, and General Masks. In cooperation with Warner Brothers, he assisted and was interviewed on season's 2-6 of the Warner releases, The "Adventures of Superman" DVDs with George Reeves 2005. That would be followed up by another appearance on the release of the "Superman" serials of 1948/50 that starred Kirk Alyn and Noel Neill 2006. Jan is credited with Kit Parker Films, Capricorn Entertainment and VCI Entertainment for his special features contribution in the restored versions of "Thunder In The Pines" and "Jungle Goddess" with George Reeves and Ralph Byrd 2006. In that same year he was also included as a consultant with Pomethius Productions on "Look Up In The Sky," and appeared on "America's Most Wanted" to discuss the mysterious death of George Reeves, television's first Superman, in conjunction with the release of "Hollywoodland".