Skip to main content

Image / Disney's Burbank studio construction site

Have a question about this item?

Item information. View source record on contributor's website.

Disney's Burbank studio construction site
Alternative Title
Los Angeles Photographers Photo Collection;
Schultheis, Herman
Made accessible through a grant from the John Randolph Haynes and Dora Haynes Foundation
Date Created and/or Issued
Circa 1939
Contributing Institution
Los Angeles Public Library
Los Angeles Public Library Photo Collection
Rights Information
Images available for reproduction and use. Please see the Ordering & Use page at for additional information.
Title supplied by cataloger.; Herman J. Schultheis was born in Aachen, Germany in 1900, and immigrated to the United States in the mid-1920s after obtaining a Ph.D. in mechanical and electrical engineering. He married Ethel Wisloh in 1936, and the pair moved to Los Angeles the following year. He worked in the film industry from the late 1930s to the mid-1940s, most notably on the animated features Fantasia and Pinocchio. His detailed notebook, documenting the special effects for Fantasia, is the subject of a 14-minute short-subject included on the film's DVD. In 1949, he started employment with Librascope as a patent engineer. Schultheis was an avid amateur photographer who traveled the world with his cameras. It was on one of these photographic exhibitions in 1955 that he disappeared in the jungles of Guatemala. His remains were discovered 18 months later. The digitized portion of this collection represents the images Schultheis took of Los Angeles and its surrounding communities after he relocated to the area in 1937.
Walt Disney planned a new million-dollar studio complex in Burbank with profits from Snow White. Kem Weber (architect and interior designer) worked with James Lill (structural engineer) to design the 51-acre campus. Many of the buildings were linked together by an underground tunnel and all of the utilities were placed underground. In December of 1939 employees began the move from the Hyperion studios to the new facilities located at 500 South Buena Vista Street.
A "no trespassing" sign is attached to the fence in this view of the Walt Disney Burbank studio being built.
1 photographic print :b&w ;11 x 15 cm.
Photographic prints
Herman J Schultheis Collection; Los Angeles Photographers Collection;
N-011-139 8x10
Walt Disney Productions
Walt Disney Animation Studios
Motion picture studios--California--Burbank (Los Angeles County)
Building construction--California--Burbank (Los Angeles County)
Fences--California--Burbank (Los Angeles County)
Signs and signboards--California--Burbank (Los Angeles County)
Meadows--California--Burbank (Los Angeles County)
Mountains--California, Southern
Griffith Park (Los Angeles, Calif.)
Santa Monica Mountains (Calif.)
Burbank (Los Angeles County, Calif.)
Schultheis Collection photographs
Weber, Kem,1889-1963
Lill, James

About the collections in Calisphere

Learn more about the collections in Calisphere. View our statement on digital primary resources.

Copyright, permissions, and use

If you're wondering about permissions and what you can do with this item, a good starting point is the "rights information" on this page. See our terms of use for more tips.

Share your story

Has Calisphere helped you advance your research, complete a project, or find something meaningful? We'd love to hear about it; please send us a message.

Explore related content on Calisphere: