As hometowns go, residents of Elmhurst, IL know theirs is among the best for raising families and imparting sold Midwest values to those brought up here.

It also happens to be the hometown of Gary Rydstrom, a winner of seven Oscars for his sound effects work on the movies “Terminator 2,” “Jurassic Park,” “Titanic” and “Saving Private Ryan.”  This year he was nominated for two more Academy Awards for his work on Steven Spielberg’s “War Horse.”  (He lost out to the sound editor for the movie “Hugo.”)

Rydstrom loves his work and attributes his Midwest upbringing for getting him his big break.

While at the USC film school, Rydstrom met a professor, Ken Miura, who happened to know “Star Wars” director George Lucas.  When Lucas asked Miura for someone to help with sound editing for “Return of the Jedi” in 1983, Miura passed along Rydstrom’s name.

Rydstrom is convinced that his low-key Midwest personality got him the recommendation.  He stated, “Honestly, I think he recommended me because he thought I wouldn’t embarrass him, that I wouldn’t get too crazy going to George Lucas’ place.”In Rydstrom’s opinion, “a Midwest personality is less showy, less self-promoting.”  He also believes being raised in an Elmhurst, IL home taught him great values and a strong work ethic—all of which have worked in his favor many, many times.

Along with his Oscar wins, Rydstrom is also famous for his work with a very familiar logo.  He created the sound for the lamp that jumps on the “I” in the PIXAR logo at the beginning of their movies.  On helping to craft this well-known symbol he said, “I feel like I created the MGM lion roar for Pixar.”

Not every person living in Elmhurst will attain such fame, but they will have the kinds of values and work ethic (the Midwest kind) to make them successful in whatever they choose to do.  It’s just one more of the many reasons to live in a place like Elmhurst.

Come live in a place where values matter.  If you’re looking to buy or sell Elmhurst real estate, contact the Gracik Makinney Group, or call (630) 567-5902.