Tag Archives: star trek

Friday Props in the News

A lot of articles on props people came out this past week. Great news for those of us who like to read!

Southern California Public Radio had a talk with Jim Elyea, founder of History for Hire, the famed prop house out in Los Angeles. The interview is just under six minutes long, and well worth a listen.

Steve Levine has been a prop master for 40 years, working on films like Airplane!Cocoon, and Apollo 13. Check out this great interview with him where he goes into detail about his lengthy career. He also has a book coming out soon, which is probably the first book about working as a Hollywood props master.

Like magic? William J. Schmeelk builds magic props and illusions for some of the top magicians in the country. Check out this article and video about his unique business.

In sadder news, Joe Longo has passed away. He was a long time prop master for Star Trek, working on The Wrath of Khan, The Search for Spock, the first five seasons of The Next Generation, and all seven seasons of Deep Space Nine. Trekcore has a collection of old interviews of Joe, including a video, while Star Trek.com has some remembrances by long-time colleagues of Longo.

RAC Props

RAC Props is a website and online magazine run by Richard A. Coyle. Mr. Coyle has made props for Star Trek II, IV, V and VI, as well as Star Trek: The Next Generation.

The magazine has a wealth of articles on props, written by Coyle and others. Some highlights include

It’s an interesting mix of original prop making and fan replica prop making.

Movie Prop Replicas

As I’ve mentioned a few websites dealing with film props, I thought I’d point out some communities based around replicating famous props from films. These are great resources for a lot of tutorials, such as vacuforming, casting, and working with fiberglas. They also focus on DIY and inexpensive solutions, so any prop shop can benefit from diving through the wealth of material they have.

The Replica Prop Forum – This is one of the cornerstones of the community, with members interested in props for a wide range of films. It also has discussions about costumes and scale modeling. Since it is a forum, it can take some time to navigate and search around, but it’s worth it.

TK560 – This site has tutorials and guides to building a number of props from Star Wars, Star Trek, and a number of other sci-fi films.

TK409 – Another site with tutorials for making do-it-yourself Star Wars props.

The previous two sites are part of the 501st legion, the “world’s definitive Imperial costuming organization.” It is an organization of over six thousand people who dress like members of the Empire in Star Wars. All of these sites have a plethora of links to other DIY prop and costuming resources throughout the internet.

The Magnoli Collection of Prop Replicas – Indy Magnoli’s collection of prop replicas. Most are based around the Indiana Jones’ movies, but some other films are represented as well. There are a good amount of paper props as well, with descriptions of how they were made.

That’s it for now. Let me know if there are any other sites you find interesting. You can also point out any other communities or groups which would have useful information for prop people.