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Joe Torrez

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Joseph Torres, Jr. was born and raised in the central San Joaquin Valley town of Stockton. His father, Joseph Torres, Sr. was sports cinematographer and his mother, Gloria, a high school teacher for over 40 years. Exposed to photography at an early age, he spent most weekends of his childhood in the motion picture processing lab that his father owned and operated, absorbing the skills of his father's craft. Influenced by his father's work, the knowledge he acquired about still and motion picture cameras, including the art of developing and printing, was both a powerful and critical part of his growing up and would ultimately lead him toward his future career goal of working in the television and motion picture industry. Joseph would assist his father in shooting football games for the University of Pacific. After a short time, he came into his own. He was given the opportunity to shoot a football game for California State University at Sacramento by himself at the age of 15. Thus, his career in cinematography was born. During his sophomore year in high school, to get out of having to write a biology report, he instead shot a 16mm documentary film that included voice over and a soundtrack. Needless to say it was a hit with his teacher and his classmates, alike. The film was so popular that it was shown to all the science classes that year and pioneered the way in which students would complete their report assignments in their science courses for years to come. He also worked as a member of the photo staff for his high school yearbook and newspaper. During his Senior year, he spent a week as the primary still photographer chosen to document a high school theater trip to London, England. Joseph had a wide range of interests besides photography. He was a student athlete in football and track, was a member of his high school choir and acted in local theater productions. As a saxophone player, Joseph was honored to have performed as a member of his high school marching band when invited to participate in the Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California in 1987. He was also involved in Boy Scouts and is proud to have reached the esteemed rank of Eagle Scout. In 1990, he was hired on his first feature film as a production assistant. The low budget feature was a great learning experience and reinforced his desire to work with motion picture cameras in film production. Later that fall, he enrolled at the prestigious School of Cinema-Television (now known as the School of Cinematic Arts) at the University of Southern California. In 1993, after earning a Bachelor of Arts degree, he began his career as a camera assistant. In 1996, he became a member of the International Cinematographer's Guild, joining as a first assistant camera. Some of his projects as a camera assistant include, the end title sequence for the remake of Dawn of the Dead, second unit on Mr. & Mrs. Smith (with Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie) and seasons five through eight on the Emmy-nominated, television comedy series, Scrubs, four seasons on ABC/TBS's Cougar Town, two seasons on Showtime's Emmy-nominated Episodes, as well as the Fox TV's comedy, Surviving Jack.  See full bio on IMDb »

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