The Pop Culture Information Society...

These are the messages that have been posted on inthe00s over the past few years.

Check out the messageboard archive index for a complete list of topic areas.

This archive is periodically refreshed with the latest messages from the current messageboard.

Check for new replies or respond here...

Subject: Celebrated cinematographer Haskell Wexler dies

Written By: ChrisBodilyTM on 12/27/15 at 6:07 pm

Haskell Wexler, who was renowned as one of the most inventive cinematographers in Hollywood and an outspoken political firebrand, died on Sunday in Santa Monica, Calif. He was 93.

With two Academy Awards and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Mr. Wexler was a prominent member of the artistic elite. But he was also a lifelong advocate of progressive causes whose landmark “Medium Cool” — a fiction film shot during the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago — demolished boundaries between documentary and fiction, reflecting his refusal to recognize limitations in either art or politics.

Mr. Wexler received the last Oscar that would be given for black-and-white cinematography, for “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” (1966). He won again a decade later for “Bound for Glory” (1976), a biography of the folk singer Woody Guthrie (whom Mr. Wexler had met during World War II, when both served in the merchant marine). He had five Oscar nominations in all, over a career that began more than auspiciously: His first genuine credit was on an Oscar-nominated 1953 documentary short, “The Living City.”

Mr. Wexler was a member of a rare Hollywood breed, the celebrity cinematographer.

Why can't Dean Cundey be that famous, too?

He was also credited as a "visual consultant" on George Lucas's seminal nostalgia piece, "American Graffiti."

In “Tell Them Who You Are” (2005), a documentary about Mr. Wexler directed by his son Mark, Ron Howard, one of the stars of “American Graffiti,” recalled the making of that film:

“Everybody involved on the acting side didn’t know much about George Lucas,” Mr. Howard said, “but was very impressed that Haskell Wexler was killing himself to come work on this movie. I mean, it was insane. He would shoot a commercial during the day in Los Angeles, then fly to San Francisco, drive to Marin County, work there till dawn and then go get on a plane. And not once in a while. He was doing this three or four nights a week.”

His credits also included One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (with Bill "Jaws" Butler), In the Heat of the Night, Canadian Bacon (one of John Candy's final films), The Thomas Crown Affair, AND Frank Zappa's Uncle Meat. (How many people can say that?  ;D)

Wow. What a life and career he had. RIP.

Check for new replies or respond here...