Audition for Industrial Light & Magic

When John Eblan was a freelance model maker back in 2000, he constructed this ode to Star Wars as part of his portfolio when he approached Industrial Light & Magic. To his surprise, the company requested a work sample.

"Just having ILM look at your portfolio is an honor, but being asked to submit a work sample is mind-blowing,” recalls John, who is now the head of the QMx FX Cinema Arts Division.

He chose to build a model based on a concept drawing of the Imperial Lander. Built from scratch based on a Star Wars technical manual, he was able to construct the vessel over a period of just five days. "It required me to scratch-build all of the components, including sculpting and kit-bashing existing model kits to harvest tiny detail parts and to add depth to the model," John recalls. "I illuminated the engines and formation lights, and applied the 'used-universe' paint job that was needed."

After arriving in California, John interviewed with the head of the ILM model shop, was hired immediately and found himself working alongside childhood heroes such as Lorne Peterson and Charlie Bailey, legends of the model-making industry. While at ILM, he worked on such projects as Pearl Harbor, XM Satellite’s commercial campaign, Star Wars Episodes II and III, and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.

QMx is grateful and proud to have John Eblan, now one of our vice presidents, applying his wealth of experience toward the props and filming miniatures QMx creates that appear on-screen, as well as the high quality replicas that honor those projects.


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