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BrickWarp| WWII US MARINE COMBAT CAMERAMAN - BILL GENAUST

BrickWarp| WWII US MARINE COMBAT CAMERAMAN - BILL GENAUST

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Hailing from my adopted home of Minneapolis, Minnesota, Bill Genaust is one of the most influential yet untold stories of WWII. Enlisting as a combat cameraman, Genaust trained both as a videographer, and a combat rifleman in Marine Corps tradition. He would be awarded a Bronze Star as well as Purple Heart on Saipan in 1944, after being wounded in a fire fight where he was cut off from his platoon, and was reported to have taken out an entire Japanese squad singlehandedly. After recovering from his wounds at home, and an option to leave the Marine Corps, Genaust would then ship out to land again with the 4th Marine Division on Iwo Jima. 

Marine Corps combat cameramen in WWII share the distinct history of having been issued state of the art, portable color motion picture cameras. Landing with his camera in the first assaulting wave, Genaust filmed for the following three days, as Marines struggled to advance against the entrenched Japanese defenders. On February 23rd, following the raising of the first flag on Mount Suribachi, Genaust was ordered to climb to the summit, after rumors spread a second flag was to be raised. Arriving just in time, Genaust captured a color reel of the iconic second flag raising, as civilian photographer Joe Rosenthal snapped still black and white images. 

Due to the new advent of portable, color film, Genausts reels were shipped out to the nearest processing base via troop ship in Guam, whereas Rosenthal's images were expedited on plane to Hawaii, and appeared in American newspapers the very next day. Despite not being viewed by the American public in theaters for several weeks, Genausts footage would settle a brief debate on whether the flag raising actually occurred or had been staged for Rosenthal's photo (yes, there were conspiracy theorists already in 1945). It would remain a staple in American theatre, and television programming for decades, becoming one of the most recognized symbols of WWII and the Marine Corps. Unfortunately, Genaust would not live to see his film processed. Several days later, clearing out Japanese remnants hunkered in caves across Iwo Jima, Genaust was killed lending a flashlight to a Marine cave clearing patrol. As policy, the cave was blasted shut, sealing Genaust inside. His remains have not yet been recovered. 

Basing this figure off original images of Genaust, it includes the standard P1941 HBT utility uniform, Navy "Boondocker" boots, Marine contract pistol belt with canteen cover, fighting knife, pistol holster, and army magazine pouch. I've also opted to include the wrap-around, inside the leg artwork for the Marine leggings, as footage Genaust shot during the landing, included his own feet with leggings, as he took cover in a shell hole. Most notable is the Navy gas mask carrier at his side, which the markings have been scribbled out on, replaced with his name and "photo sect.", likely to carry his film cartridges. 

Included is also my rendition of Genaust's Bell & Howell Auto Master Filmo 16mm camera, printed on three sides, with a texture printed lens. 

Original Proof Copy - 1 of 1, first complete minifigure out of the printer. Signature by Landon Reimer, complete with alternative yellow and 'suntanned' heads, sealed plastic collectors slab with Brick Warp artwork, original Marine frogskin camouflage material sample. 

Collectors Edition - Signature by Landon Reimer, complete with alternative yellow and 'sun-tanned' heads, sealed plastic collectors slab with Brick Warp artwork, original Marine frogskin camouflage material sample. 

Base Model - Complete figure in hand-stamped numbered case inspired by WWII era packaging. No alternate heads, not sealed. This packaging again, is hand-stamped and is not intended to look perfect. 

  • Custom printed BrickArms M1 Steel Pot helmet with beach/tan frogskin artwork 
  • Custom printed minifigure head 
  • P1941 HBT utility uniform (photo section marked)
  • Marine contract M1936 pistol belt
  • M1923 army pistol magazine pouch  
  • P2 Marine canteen cover
  • Ka-Bar fighting Knife
  • USN gas mask bag (photo section marked) 
  • Green USMC undershirt 
  • Navy N1 (Boondocker) boots
  • Inside leg Marine leggings/gaiters printing 
  • Classic Lego yellow and sun tanned head variations (included with original and collectors edition) 
  • Holographically sealed packaging (original and collectors edition) 
  • Original Frogskin Camouflage Poncho Sample (original and collectors edition)
  • Hand stamped WWII inspired packaging (base model) 

Information Info: Art and printing by Lando (that’s me!) on genuine factory direct Lego bricks. This is a custom product created independently and not affiliated or endorsed by Lego.

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