Frederic Waller (1886 – May 18, 1954) was an American inventor and film pioneer. He is most known for his contributions to film special effects while working at Paramount Pictures, for his creation of the Waller Flexible Gunnery Trainer, and for inventing Cinerama, the immersive experience of a curved film screen that extends to the viewer's peripheral vision for which he received an Academy Award. Waller, a snow skiing and boating enthusiast, is also credited with obtaining the first patent for a water ski. He produced and directed 200 one-reel shorts for Paramount, including Cab Calloway's Hi-De-Ho and Duke Ellington's Symphony in Black. He patented several pieces of photographic equipment, including a camera that could take a 360-degree still photo. As the special projects director for the 1939 New York World's Fair, he collaborated on the fair centerpiece attraction called the Perisphere, the Eastman Kodak Hall of Color, and he developed the Time and Space Building to showcase his creation, Vitarama the precursor to Cinerama.
Brooklyn, New York, United States
|Died||May 18, 1954
(aged 67–68) |
Huntington, New York, United States
|Education||Brooklyn Polytechnic Institute|
|Employer||Paramount Pictures, Vitarama Corp, Kenyan Instrument Company|
|Known for||Inventor of Cinerama; Inventor of the Waller Gunnery Trainer; first to patent the water ski; made 200 short films for Paramount Pictures|
|Children||Stuart, Muriel (both with Irene Seymour)|
|Parent(s)||Frederic Waller, Katherine Stearns|
- U.S. Patent 1,559,390: Aquaplane (filed Aug 22, 1925, issued Oct 27, 1925)
- U.S. Patent 2,125,365: Anemometer (filed Dec 29, 1936, issued Aug 2, 1938)
- U.S. Patent 2,164,791: Apparatus for taking sounds (filed May 29, 1937, issued Jul 4, 1939)
- U.S. Patent 2,273,074: Screen for picture projection (filed Jun 14, 1938, issued Feb 17, 1942)
- U.S. Patent 2,445,982: Gunnery training apparatus (filed May 20, 1944, issued Jul 27, 1948)
- U.S. Patent 2,470,592: Control band for gunnery training apparatus (filed May 20, 1944, issued May 17, 1949)
- U.S. Patent 2,454,238: Electrically illuminated display apparatus (filed Jul 26, 1944, issued Nov 16, 1948)
- U.S. Patent 2,487,620: Desiccator (filed Mar 8, 1946, issued Nov 8, 1949)
- U.S. Patent 2,503,083: Apparatus for controlling picture displays from sound records (filed Feb 15, 1947, issued Apr 4, 1950)
- U.S. Patent 2,476,521: Screen for picture projections (filed Sep 22, 1947, issued Jul 19, 1949)
- U.S. Patent 2,664,780: Method of photographically correcting the photographic images of objects (filed Feb 4, 1948, issued Jan 5, 1954)
- U.S. Patent 2,583,030: Parallax correction for multilens cameras (filed Oct 9, 1948, issued Jan 22, 1952)
- U.S. Patent 2,563,893: Apparatus for holding and guiding a chain of slides for successive display (filed Nov 17, 1948, issued Aug 14, 1951)
- U.S. Patent 2,682,722: Linked holder for lantern slides (filed Dec 4, 1948, issued Jul 6, 1954)
- U.S. Patent 2,664,781: Photographic apparatus for correcting negatives during printing thereof (filed Sep 30, 1949, issued Jan 5, 1954)
- U.S. Patent 2,705,439: Slide projector with sloping magazine and slide carrier for withdrawing the lowermost slide from the magazine (filed Feb 20, 1951, issued Apr 5, 1955)
- Obituary, "The Brooklyn Daily Eagle". Brooklyn, New York, Wednesday, May 19, 1954, page 15
- "The Waller Flexible Gunnery Trainer". in70mm.com. Retrieved 2016-12-04.
- "Ladies and Gentlemen, This is Cinerama!". in70mm.com. Retrieved 2016-12-04.
- "Patent US1559390 - Aquaplane - Google Patents". google.com. Retrieved 2016-12-04.
- Garraty, John A. (1999) "American National Biography, Volume 22, page 550"
- Carey, Charles W. (1999) "American Inventors, Entrepreneurs, and Business Visionaries". Facts on File Library of American History ISBN 0-8160-8146-8.
- Koszarski, Richard. (2008) "Hollywood On the Hudson: Film and Television in New York from Griffith to Sarnoff". Rutgers University Press ISBN 0-8135-4293-6.
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