ADG Perspective

July-August 2016

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68 P E R S P E C T I V E | J U LY / AU G U S T 2 0 1 6 milestones STEPHEN DANE 1941 – 2016 by Norm Newberry and Stephen's family Stephen Dane was born at the Hollywood Presbyterian Hospital on August 3, 1941. His father, Raymond Dane, was the publicist at 20th Century Fox for the young movie star, Shirley Temple. Stephen's mother, Dorothy Jeakins, did fashion illustration for the I. Magnin stores in Los Angeles. Stephen grew up in Brentwood, near to Johann's Hobby Shop on San Vicente Boulevard. He had a knack for building models with balsa wood and from kits, and from the art classes in school he became a facile illustrator. He also learned to play the cello. At a Sunday garden party at Gene Kelly's house in Beverly Hills, Stephen played a duet on cello with Gene's daughter on violin. Later on, when his mother became an Oscar ® -winning costume designer, Stephen was sent to the exclusive boys ranch prep school, Midland, in the Santa Ynez Valley. He spent his senior year at University High in West Los Angeles, graduating in 1959. Stephen started as an architectural draftsman during the summer months while in high school. He rode his bicycle Monday to Friday, from Brentwood to Beverly Hills, to work for Fred Greene, a popular building contractor. The carpenters coached him on the fine points of detail drawings. After graduating from high school, he attended Santa Monica City College for a year, and then enrolled at Bard College in New York, where he met and married art student Sarah Draney. Knowing he needed some vocational education, Stephen enrolled in the Beaux Arts program in architecture at the University of California, Berkeley, where he received the Dean's Sculpture Prize for a geometric, four-part modular design showing the possibilities for configuring simple geometric shapes—the building blocks of all architecture. In 1965, he designed and built a modern studio/house near Santa Barbara. After receiving his degree, he worked for some of the leading West Coast architects, including Harry Gesner, John Fisher, Max Schardt and Frank Gehry. Steve was always attracted to the movie industry, ever since he visited sets with his mother. In 1973, he found work in the Universal Studios architectural office and soon became a Set Designer, working on many films and television shows, including Quincy M.E., B.J. and the Bear, More American Graffiti and The Electric Horseman. Steve eventually became an Art Director and he described the high point of his career during the 1980s when he worked on Blade Runner, Brainstorm, The Adventures of Buckaroo Bonzai Across the 8th Dimension, Red Dawn and Ghostbusters. As part of his design work, he specialized in the detailed realization of important vehicles and props. He designed the famous ambulance/Ecto-mobile for Ghostbusters, drew Syd Mead's vehicles and props for Ridley Scott in Blade Runner and designed Soviet army helicopters for Red Dawn. In the late 1980s, Stephen was hired to help design the set streets for Universal Creative, Universal Studios' theme park design group. He completed streets for parks in Los Angeles, Florida and two parks in Japan. Steve also worked for Thinkwell and other companies which design for theme parks overseas. After working in the movie industry for thirty years, Steve retired but continued his work in architecture, commercial interiors, product design, photo shoots, commercials and graphic design. Stephen suffered a stroke and passed away on April 25, 2016.

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