Despite having received his start in film as a part of George Lucas' famed visual effects team on "Star Wars" (1977), and eventually directing several high-profile movies himself, Joe Johnston somehow managed to keep a remarkably low-profile during much of his career. Originally intending to pursue a career in industrial design, Johnston's professional path took an unexpected turn when he answered an ad looking for illustrators to work on a new science fiction movie. That movie turned out to be "Star Wars," and from there Johnston worked as a visual effects director on that film's two sequels, in addition to similar duties on Steven Spielberg's "Raiders of the Lost Ark" (1981). Encouraged by Lucas to try his hand at directing, Johnston enrolled in the University of Southern California's filmmaking program, although he continued to work on various Lucas/Spielberg projects. Shortly thereafter, Johnston was hired by Disney Studios to direct his first feature film, "Honey, I Shrunk the Kids" (1989). Family-friendly material, filled with special effects became Johnston's stock in trade, exemplified by films like "The Rocketeer" (1991) and "Jumamji" (1995). Even as he made a name for himself as a director, Johnston continued to help fellow filmmakers with visual design work, including creating the initial drawing of the massive automaton for director Brad Bird's "The Iron Giant" (1999). He also managed to deliver a more personal film with the acclaimed "October Sky" (1999), before helming the special effects blockbuster "Jurassic Park III" (2001). Johnston endured a few misfires, taking the reins of the horseracing epic "Hildalgo" (2004) prior to landing the thankless task of salvaging the cursed remake "The Wolfman" (2010). As a filmmaker, Johnston's legacy would be that of a competent director, perhaps too reliant upon visual wizardry. However, as an unsung hero and creative force on some of the most beloved movies of all time, Joe Johnston's lasting impact on cinema was already assured.