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Mole-Richardson, also known as Mole, is an American stage lighting instrument and motion picture lighting manufacturing company originally based in Hollywood, California . The company was started in 1927 by Italian immigrant Pietro "Peter" Mule (changed to Mole). Born November 10, 1891, in the Italian town of Termini Imerese, Sicily, he first worked for General Electric (GE) in New York. In 1927 he began selling incandescent tungsten lighting to the film industry, which allowed a more natural lighting than the previous arc lights. The new lights were also silent, an advantage for the new sound films.[1]

Mole-Richardson invented the Fresnel Solar Spot unit in 1935, adapting the fresnel lighthouse lens for use in motion pictures. It won the first of four technical Academy Awards the company has earned.[2]

During World War II , Mole-Richardson concentrated their efforts on developing searchlights for battleships, tanks and artillery units to aid the Allied Forces' battle in Europe and the Pacific. In 1945, Peter Mole was invited to light the first United Nations conference held in San Francisco.[citation needed]

Peter Mole died on August 2, 1960, very suddenly. His son-in-law, Warren Parker, took over the company. Mole-Richardson Company is now run by two of Warren Parker's four sons and grandchildren of Peter Mole, Larry Mole Parker and Mike Parker.

Mole-Richardson is considered by many to be the staple of motion picture and television lighting in the movie industry today, setting the standard for tungsten fresnel fixtures. However, they do also manufacture HMI (Hydrargyrum Medium-arc Iodide) day-light lighting units. Their lighting is generally recognized by their maroon coloring and "MR" logos.

In August 2015, the company moved to Pacoima neighborhood of Los Angeles, California.[3]


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