Real World article
(written from a Production point of view)

Lisa R. Morton (born 11 December 1958; age 62) is a noted, multiple award winning, author of books and novellas in the horror genre, as well as a screenwriter for several television productions. Nevertheless, Morton started out in the motion picture industry as a studio model maker, and as such has contributed to two Star Trek productions, albeit uncredited for both.

In the late 1970s Lisa Morton, a movie memorabilia collector, met and befriended fellow collector Gregory Jein through the convention circuit. It was through this acquaintance that Morton landed her first professional job in the motion picture industry, as she recalled, "I never really thought about hitting him up for a job, but he hit me up. He said to me one day, "Hey, you know, if you ever want to work for this, sometimes I need a lot of people", and I said, "Sure, I'd love to." So he actually did end up calling me. There were are group of us he kind of mentioned it to, and he called us one day and said, "Hey, we are on Star Trek: The Motion Picture, and we need an army to get this thing done on time. Do you want to come to work?" Needless to say, yes was the answer." (Sense of Scale) The "army" Jein referred to was not an exaggeration, as he elaborated on the tight time schedule of three-four weeks he was given, "We called people all over town. There were probably close to twenty or thirty of us working on it, on and off. At least four weekends we didn't go home at all. When it finally came out, we were still two or three days late." (Cinefex, issue 2, p. 45) Officially brought in by Entertainment Effects Group as "Gregory Jein, Inc.", in order to alleviate the time pressure on that company, Jein's "army", which incidentally also included Don Pennington, as well as Bill George of later Industrial Light & Magic (ILM) fame, was tasked with the construction of the interior model sections of V'ger.

In the last quarter of 1987, Lisa Morton very shortly returned in Greg Jein's employ, helping out her former mentor with kick-starting his recently revitalized company, Gregory Jein, Inc. While there, she, among others, helped out with the company's first official Star Trek: The Next Generation commission, the build of the D'Kora-class studio model, intended for use in the Next Generation's first season episode "The Last Outpost".

Career outside Star Trek

Morton with the ILM "dumpster diving" team of Bill George (2nd right)

Prior to her gig at the Motion Picture, Lisa Morton had already become friends with Bill George, whom she had met through the science fiction convention circuit, and became part of his "dumpster diving" team that scavenged through the trash dumpsters of ILM's at their Van Nuys, Los Angeles facility, in search of discarded production items, during the years 1977-1978.

Having been taken under the wing of Greg Jein, Morton followed her mentor after The Motion Picture to work on the models for the Close Encounters of the Third Kind-Special Edition of 1980. [1] She continued to do this kind of visual effects work as well for the productions, The Beast Within (1982, featuring Ronny Cox and Bibi Besch), One Dark Night (1982), and The Abyss (1989), mostly uncredited.

By 1987 however, despite her short spell at Gregory Jein, Inc., Lisa Morton's career had already taken on a different path toward screen writing and producing, having started out by serving as writer, director and producer for several small theater companies in the Southern California area. As such, she has continued to contribute to, mostly television, productions like, Meet the Hollowheads (1989, in both capacities), Adventures in Dinosaur City (1991), Toontown Kids (1994), Sky Dancers (1996), Dragon Flyz (1996), Van-pires (1997), Tornado Warning (2002), Blue Demon (2004), with the 2005 productions Thralls and Glass Trap, her most recent ones.

Over the course of the 1990s, Lisa Morton developed an interest in writing stories in the horror genre, a calling she has pursued vigorously ever since. This she did with ever increasing success, having earned the Bram Stoker Awards for her short story "Tested" (2006), her first novella, "The Lucid Dreaming" (2009) as well as one for a non-fiction one in 2008, A Hallowe'en Anthology: Literary and Historical Writings Over the Centuries, which also received a Black Quill Award nomination. The latter award however was won by her the next year for the Midnight Walk anthology. In addition to these two consecutive President's Richard Laymon Awards from the Horror Writers Association, were won by her in 2006 and 2007.

In the below mentioned documentary, Lisa Morton has reminisced in-depth about her model making days, and which, incidentally, also prominently features her former mentor, Greg Jein.

Star Trek interview

External links

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