Fall 2020

Ratched, The Morning Show, and Dummy

Jeff Cree Memorial Fund:

Jeff Cree, SOC was a television & film industry veteran who’s knowledge, dedication, and compassion was an inspiration to all of us that knew him.

The Jeff Cree Memorial Fund was created to help Jeff’s Family in this difficult time. All donations are welcome.

Please visit: https://www.gofundme.com/f/jeff-cree-memorial-fund

Thank you for helping keep Jeff’s memory alive.

Industry Obituary Notice:

Steven Manios Sr.

Steven Manios Sr., former owner and president of Century Precision Optics, known for his groundbreaking work in camera optics, died January 3, 2021, from complications of COVID-19.

During a career in Hollywood spanning five decades, Manios developed numerous optical devices, including wide-angle and telephoto lenses, that became standard equipment in film and television production. He was awarded several U.S. patents and earned the patronage and friendship of many of the industry’s top cinematographers. His work in adapting the Canon 150-600 zoom lens to professional use brought Century Precision Optics a Technical Achievement Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 1992. Manios was recognized with the Society of Camera Operators’ Distinguished Service Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016.

Manios was born September 4, 1938, in Athens, Greece. His family survived Greece’s Great Famine of 1941-2, which took the lives of 300,000 people. At age 12, following his father’s illness, he left school and began working. At 19, he moved to Los Angeles where he became an apprentice to Chris Condon, a family friend, and owner of Century Photo Supplies. He started out sleeping on a cot in the back of the machine shop but went onto become a skilled optical craftsman and, in 1973, bought the company from Condon.

Over the next several decades, Manios developed the company, renamed Century Precision Optics, into a major supplier of specialty optical equipment. Its Tele-Athenar telephoto lenses were widely used in filming action sports and wildlife, including for the film Endless Summer and the television series Wild America and Hawaii Five-O. The company created a custom relay system used in shooting model sequences in the first Star Wars movie. It also developed specialized lenses used by the U.S. military to test weapons systems and by auto manufacturers in crash tests. Other gear aided underwater photography and newsgathering.

Under Manios’ leadership, Century Precision Optics continued to develop innovative products into the 1990s. Manios sold the company to Tinsley Laboratories in 1993 and remained on its board of directors until 1998. Continuing to develop optical devices into the 2000s, Manios saw a need for high quality, wide-angle, short-zoom lens for Steadicam cinematography. Working with Angenieux, his design resulted in the Angenieux 15-40 T2.6 Optimo, the first in the company’s popular Optimo and DP series of zoom lenses.

Manios is survived by his wife, Linda; children Athena, Steven Jr., and Dina, and seven grandchildren.

SOC Happy Hour

February 6, 4:30–6 pm, online
Join the SOC for this informal Zoom gathering on the first Saturday of the month from 4:30–6:00pm PST, to meet and greet with fellow members. This gathering is informal and freeform with a SOC host. Jump on at any time during the “happy hour”, with a drink in hand, and connect with your fellow operators.
Hosted by: Daniel Turrett, SOC – 2nd VP Board of Governors & Membership Co-Chair and Lisa Stacilauskas, SOC –  Board of Governor, Inclusion Committee Member

The Creativity & Heritage Celebration


April 11, 5–7pm PST, Online

Join the Society for a two-hour virtual celebration. Bringing together the visionary teams of the season’s best cinematic creativity and honoring past Lifetime Recipients. Hosted by the SOC Awards Committee, this unique gathering will bring together the community in celebration of the industry’s triumphs, masterful storytelling, and the stand out creative collaborations.


SOC Membership Resources and Portal Launched

The Educational Committee has been busy over the last few months providing online sessions over sixty hours currently. We saw the need to set up a membership portal for current members of all categories to access this material. We are proud to announce that the membership portal is launched.

Each member is responsible to set up their own username and password If you are a current member, you received an email with the account set up information. For further assistance, please email SOCOffice@SOC.org.

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