One thing is for sure about 2016, we have lost way too many genre favorites. From actors to directors to artists to cinematographers and everyone else in between….just way too many. There were some that I consider icons, such as Herchell Gordon Lewis, who paved the way for thousands of young filmmakers. Actor Don Calfa appeared in so many sitcoms and movies but was still able to come up with so many wonderful characters. Then we have Angus Scrimm, who really only appeared in a handful of features, but it only took one role for him to forever be remembered in the hearts of us horror fans. And while actor/writer Gene Wilder was mainly known for his comedic side, along with Mel Brooks, he gave us one of the best tributes to the classic Frankenstein pictures.
The world has lost a great talent in the world of cinema with the passing of cinematographer Douglas Slocombe, who passed away last Monday at the age of 103. Slocombe was in the business over 40 years, working on 80 films, in which he received 3 Oscar nominations and 11 BAFTA nominations, winning 3 of those. But aside from his filmwork, his eariler days are a movie waiting to be made!
He started in journalism, working for the British United Press as a junior editor, while in his free time, he continued his passion for photography. He eventually started selling his stills to different magazines around the world, as well as continuing to write. His introduction to filmmaking came when he convinced Life to send him to Danzig in 1939, where he filmed some very dangerous subjects, like a meeting of SS stormtroopers. At the time, Danzig was known as the most dangerous place in Europe because of the German occupation. Slocombe’s work was being smuggled out by the Polish Embassy, but he was being watched very closely by the Germans. He would later spend a lot of time on different navy ships such as Destroyers, Aircraft Carriers, and more. After the war, he made his way into Ealing Studios, which is where he started his movie career.