The Finding Aid of the Chuck Waters Papers 0122

Finding aid prepared by Beth McDonald and Katie Richardson
Pepperdine University. Special Collections and University Archives.
24255 Pacific Coast Highway
Malibu, CA, 90263-4786
(310) 506-4434
December 2013

Title: Chuck Waters Papers
Identifier/Call Number: 0122
Contributing Institution: Pepperdine University. Special Collections and University Archives.
Language of Material: English
Physical Description: 2.92 linear feet (7 boxes)
Date (inclusive): 1965-1998
Abstract: Chuck Waters is an American stuntman and actor who has worked on more than 130 films, including The Deer Hunter, Apocalypse Now, The Exorcist, the Indiana Jones trilogy, and Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl. The collection includes scripts, notes, photographs, stunt reels, articles, and ephemera relating to Waters' career in the stunt industry.
Creator: Waters, Chuck, 1934-

Conditions Governing Access

Advance notice required for access. Pepperdine has digital surrogates of Series 3. Photographs, and the last file in Series 2. Career, "Thank You Letters from Actors and Producers." The file name for each of these items is located following the item's title in parentheses. The originals have been retained by Chuck Waters. The rest of the materials are housed in Pepperdine University Special Collections and University Archives. The digital surrogates can be accessed through Pepperdine's Digital Collection:

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from the repository and the copyright holder.

Preferred Citation

[Box/folder# or item name], Chuck Waters Papers, Collection no. 0122, Special Collections and University Archives, University Libraries, Pepperdine University.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The collection was given to Pepperdine University by Chuck Waters on November 25, 2013.

Biographical note

Chuck Waters is an American stuntman and actor who has worked on more than 130 films. Waters was born on September 14, 1934, in Libertyville, Illinois and grew up in Waukegan, Illinois. Even as a child, he was known for his adventurous nature: as early as five years old, he could be found climbing on the roof of his house and jumping to a nearby tree to get down. In high school, Waters could often be found scaling fire escapes or hopping trains. At 17, Waters and a friend hitchhiked to California and back, then Waters hitchhiked to New Jersey and back on his own, just for the adventure of it.
After high school, Waters joined the Marine Corps for a short tour of duty. When he returned from the military, Waters enrolled in a plumbing apprenticeship school and spent 10 years in the plumbing business. In 1955, Waters married his first wife, Carol. The couple had four children.
Waters decided to move to Hollywood in the early 1960s. Shortly after arriving in California, he read an article about stuntmen in the TV Guide. He found the challenges and excitement of a stuntman's career appealing and decided to try and make a name for himself in the stunt industry. Waters eventually connected with well-known stuntman, Paul Stader, who owned a boxing gym in Santa Monica where he trained up and coming stuntmen. Chuck began training with Stader and in 1965, after only 9 months of training, was recommended to take Stader's place on a job as a scuba diver on the TV series Honey West starring Ann Francis.
In the 1970s, Waters' career took off. He performed stunts in major films such as High Plains Drifter, The Exorcist (crashing through a window and down 75 steps as Jason Miller's stunt double), The Deer Hunter, and Apocalypse Now. In 1973, on the set of the Clint Eastwood film Thunderbolt and Lightfoot , Waters met his second wife, Charlotte Peterson. The two were married in 1975. In the 1980s, Waters began receiving jobs as a stunt coordinator and he has alternated between orchestrating the stunts and performing them ever since. All of the stunts that Waters has performed have been live action stunts and have not been computerized in any way.
Over the course of his career, Waters has worked with many of the top names in Hollywood, including George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, William Friedkin, Francis Ford Coppola and noted 2nd Unit Director Micky Moore. He has worked with actors such as Harrison Ford, Martin Sheen, Sean Penn, Robert De Niro, and Sean Connery. One of his longest working relationships is with actor/director Clint Eastwood, with whom Waters has done 13 films. Additional movies Waters has worked on include: Raiders of the Lost Ark, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, National Lampoon's European Vacation, Flubber, Every Which Way But Loose, Flags of Our Fathers, and Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl.
Waters has been a member of the Stuntmen’s Association of Motion Pictures and Television since 1966 and in 2001, received a Lifetime Member Award.

Scope and Content

The collection includes scripts, notes, photographs, stunt reels, articles, and ephemera relating to Waters' career in the stunt industry.


The collection is arranged into three series: 1. Scripts; 2. Career; and 3. Photographs. Files within each series are organized chronologically.

Related Archival Materials

Michael D. (Micky) Moore Papers, 0117, Special Collections and University Archives, University Libraries, Pepperdine University.

Processing Information note

The collection was arranged and described by Beth McDonald, Pepperdine Special Collections and University Archives Intern, under the supervision of Katie Richardson in December, 2013.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

Eastwood, Clint, 1930-
Lucas, George, 1944-
Moore, Michael, 1914-2013
Spielberg, Steven, 1946-
Waters, Chuck, 1934-
Actors and actresses--United States
Feature films--United States
Los Angeles (Calif.)--History
Motion pictures, American
Stunt performers
Television scripts

Box 1-7

Series 1: Scripts 1982-1998

Scope and Content

The series is comprised of scripts and script notes from movies and television shows that Waters worked on.
Box 1

Bad Boys 1982

Box 1

American Dreamer 1983

Box 1

Distant Thunder 1983

Box 1

Mischief ( Heart and Soul) 1984

Scope and Content

The original title of this film was Heart and Soul. The final title was Mischief.
Box 1

At Close Range 1985

Box 2

Dalton 1985

Box 2

Lady Blue 1985

Box 2

Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color: Hero in the Family original script is titled Astronaut and Son 1986

Box 2

Russkies 1986

Box 2

The Golden Child 1986

Box 3

Colors 1987

Box 3

Couch Party 1987

Box 3

Necessity 1987

Box 3

Fletch Lives! 1988

Box 3

Knightwatch 1988

Box 3

Arachnophobia 1989

Box 4

Call from Space 1989

Box 4

Collision Course 1989

Box 4

Ernest Goes to Jail 1989

Box 4

Nasty Boys 1989

Box 4

Ernest Scared Stupid 1991

Box 4

Boiling Point 1992

Box 4

Fire in the Sky 1992

Box 4

Freejack 1992

Box 5

Malice 1992

Box 5

The Thing Called Love 1992

Box 5

Cops and Robbersons 1993

Box 5

Pointman 1993

Box 5

Last of the Dogmen 1994

Box 5

Op Center 1994

Box 6

The Crossing Guard 1994

Box 6

The Fantasticks 1995

Box 6

Robin Cook's Terminal 1995-1996

Box 6

Flubber 1997

Box 6

Isn't It Romantic? 1997

Box 6

Wrongfully Accused 1997

Box 7

The Sky's on Fire 1998

Box 7

Series 2: Career 1970s-1990s

Scope and Content

The series is comprised of articles, stunt reels and other materials documenting Waters' career in stuntwork.
Box 7

Articles 1970s

Box 7

Filmography 1980s-1990s

Box 7

Stunt Reel 1970s-1990s

Physical Description: (1 DVD)

Thank You Letters from Actors and Producers 1983-1992

Physical Description: (waters00088.pdf - waters00099.pdf)

Series 3: Photographs 1965-1996

Physical Description: (113 photographs, 5 article clippings, 2 photocopies, 1 postcard, and 1 sheet of production information)

Scope and Content

The series is comprised of photographs from movies and television shows that Waters worked on. Pepperdine has digital surrogates of this series that can be accessed here: Originals have been kept by Chuck Waters.

The Russians are Coming the Russians are Coming 1965

Physical Description: (waters00101.tif - waters00103.tif)

Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea 1966

Physical Description: (waters00001.tif, waters00002.tif)

Batman 1966

Physical Description: (waters00003.tif, waters00004.tif)

The Time Tunnel 1966

Physical Description: (waters00005.tif, waters00104.tif)

Custer (The Legend of Custer) 1967

Physical Description: (waters00006.tif, waters00105.tif)

The Molly Maguires 1970

Physical Description: (waters00007.tif - waters00009.tif, waters00087.tif)

The Grissom Gang 1971

Physical Description: (waters00010.tif)

The Exorcist 1972

Physical Description: (waters00077.tif - waters00082.tif, waters131.jpg - waters132.jpg, waters00084.pdf, waters00085.pdf, waters130.pdf)

Now You See Him, Now You Don't 1972

Physical Description: (waters00011.tif)

Conquest of the Planet of the Apes 1972

Physical Description: (waters00012.tif - waters00013.tif)

High Plains Drifter 1972-1973

Physical Description: (waters00014.tif - waters00019.tif)

The Parallax View 1974

Physical Description: (waters00020.tif - waters00022.tif, waters00083.pdf)

The White Dawn 1974

Physical Description: (waters00023.tif)

Three for the Road 1975

Physical Description: (waters00107.tif - waters00109.tif)

Swashbuckler 1975 November

Physical Description: (waters00110.tif, waters00024.tif, waters00133.pdf)

The Ultimate Warrior 1975

Physical Description: (waters00111.tif)

The Deer Hunter 1977-1978

Physical Description: (waters00025.tif - waters00032.tif, waters00086.tif, waters00134.pdf)

Every Which Way But Loose 1978

Physical Description: (waters00033.tif - waters00036.tif)

Eagle's Wing 1978

Physical Description: (waters00037.tif - waters00039.tif)

The Fantastic Seven 1979

Physical Description: (waters00040.tif)

Melvin and Howard 1980

Physical Description: (waters00041.tif, waters00042.tif)

Honky Tonk Freeway 1981

Physical Description: (waters00043.tif, waters00044.tif)

Bad Boys 1983

Physical Description: (waters00045.tif - waters00054.tif)

Yellowbeard 1983

Physical Description: (waters00112.tif, waters00113.tif)

Sudden Impact 1983

Physical Description: (waters00055.tif)

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom 1984

Physical Description: (waters00114.tif)

Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color Hero in the Family 1984

Physical Description: (waters00056.tif, waters00057, tifwaters00115.tif - waters00120.tif)

Scope and Content

The original title of this production was Astronaut and Son.

American Dreamer 1984

Physical Description: (waters00058.tif - waters00060.tif)

At Close Range 1985

Physical Description: (waters00061.tif - waters00062.tif)

Colors 1987

Physical Description: (waters00063.tif)

Nichols and Dymes 1989

Physical Description: (waters00064.tif - waters00067.tif)

Stolen Woman: Captured Hearts 1996

Physical Description: (waters00068.tif, waters00121.tif)

The Mask of Zoro 1998

Physical Description: (waters00122.tif)

The Sky's on Fire 1999

Physical Description: (waters00123.tif)

Stills for Stuntman Association Book 1968-1969

Physical Description: (waters00124.tif - waters00126.tif)

Various Photos of Chuck Waters Training 1968-1990s

Physical Description: (waters00127.tif - waters00129.tif, waters00071.tif - waters00076.tif, waters00106.tif)