Growing Up with UFOs
What’s it like to not know a life without UFOs? Where flying saucer ornaments were on the Christmas tree, Project Blue Book air force personnel and people like Travis Walton and Father Gill were normal dinner guests, and strange objects would show up? Hear Joel and Paul talk about their upbringing in the Hynek household, and how it shaped their lives. Learn about what J. Allen Hynek was really like, what made him tick, and how he transformed from a skeptic into the world’s foremost authority on UFOs, taking his whole family along for the ride. This will be a lively close encounter with the Hynek family.
Paul Hynek is a Wharton MBA, a professor of finance at Pepperdine University, and the creator of EZ Numbers software which has helped startups raise over $2 billion. He created the world’s first online program for kids and introduced it on stage with Bill Gates.
Paul has worked in visual effects on numerous movies and games, including Avatar, Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Planet of the Apes, Call of Duty, Halo, etc. and was instrumental in selling the motion capture company to James Cameron.
He has the most documented success in age reversal in history, and is active in the life extension and artificial intelligence communities.
Paul’s latest passion is cryptocurrency, which he feels will revolutionize and democratize global finance.
Paul’s father is J. Allen Hynek, and so he grew up with UFOs and science. Paul’s specific interest in UFOlogy is the potential of an interdimensional origin.
Joel Hynek is a two-time Academy Award winner with over twenty films and several notable theme park rides to his credit, as well as dozens of television episodes.
Joel studied physics at Carnegie-Mellon University before graduating from the University of Illinois with a Bachelor of Science in Communication as a Film major. Joel began his visual effects career with R/Greenberg Associates in NYC. While at Greenberg he created new technology for projects to include the original Predator film; visual effects work that received a lot of attention in the form of an Academy Award nomination as well as Joel’s first Academy Award win (Scientific and Engineering Design Award) for designing the camera that made the effects for Predator possible.
An introduction to the infamous Doug Trumbull during the filming of Close Encounters of the Third Kind, (his father, Astronomer, Dr. Allen Hynek, was cameoed in the film), led to an eventual joining of forces with Doug and many great collaborations including 3 immersive experiences for the Luxor Hotel in Las Vegas and notably the creation of the 1993 Columbia Pictures Logo which is still in use today. Joel eventually reinvented the Trumbull company with new investors and Doug’s blessing, forming Mass.Illusion in Massachusetts, serving as Creative Director and Visual Effects Supervisor. A key project from Mass.Illusion was What Dreams May Come – Joel’s second Academy Award win, this time for Best Visual Effects for the memorable Painted World sequence.
Mass.Illusions would eventually expand into and become Manex Entertainment, re-establishing itself in the San Francisco area. Notable projects out of Manex included The Matrix. Though he did not take credit for it, Joel supervised the development of the Bullet-Time Effect for The Matrix, one of the most iconic visual effects of all time.
Following Manex, and by now one of the most in demand Visual Effects Supervisors in the business, Joel joined Digital Doman where he continued to create game-changing visual effects on big effects films of the times to include the original xXx, Stealth, Jumper, and The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor, one of the first Chinese co-productions shot in China. Joel factored into the legendary sale of Digital Domain to
Director Michael Bay and investors.
After a fantastic run with Digital Domain, Joel was recruited by India giant Tata Elxsi to lead their charge of branching into visual effects and with “Hollywood esthetics.” With offices in Santa Monica and Mumbai, Joel supervised Dhoom 3, one of the highest grossing Bollywood films of all time and the first Indian film to be released in IMAX. While at Tata, Joel would supervise the Pilot for the HBO series Luck, the Michael Mann/David Milch horse racing drama. Joel followed this entry to episodic work with 4 seasons and 66 episodes of the WB/CW series The Originals for Entity FX.
The East beckoned again and Joel was recruited to raise the bar on a few big Chinese projects including Crazy Alien, a top box office performer with a CG principal character, followed by The YinYang Master, another big Chinese production with twenty-two CG characters as well as starting a remake of Journey to the West (Return of the Monkey King). On Journey, Joel was testing the full use of Virtual Production prior to the film getting suspended because of the Coronavirus.
Joel has continued exploring the use of virtual production recently supervising the short film Jeffrey which shot on an LED stage and incorporated physical set pieces between the LED walls.
Following his experience on Project Blue Book (2019-2020), the History Channel’s portrayal of his father’s UFO work for the U.S. Air Force, Joel has become attached to a new UFO series in development which would feature he and his brother as hosts of the series. And ever the explorer, Joel, and his brother, Paul, are two of 9 people in the world to regrow their thymus gland in the first FDA approved procedure for life
extension under the aegis of the Stanford Neuroscience Institute.
Joel has served the visual effects community as a Member of the Board of the Visual Effects Society and on the Executive Committee of the Visual Effects Branch of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for over 20 years.