Magazine article American Cinematographer

From the Clubhouse: Harry Wolf Recognized by ATAS

Magazine article American Cinematographer

From the Clubhouse: Harry Wolf Recognized by ATAS

Article excerpt

Inspired by the film Visions of Light, the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences held its own tribute to cinematography on July 7 with an evening dedicated to veteran cinematographer Harry Wolf, ASC, in recognition of his many years of service to the Television and Motion Picture Academies and his stellar contributions to the art of cinematography.

Academy Television President Leo Chaloukian presented Wolf with a plaque thanking him for his longtime work on various Academy committees and for the advancements he's helped achieve as a governor, including student awards, internships and the Television Hall of Fame.

Early in the evening, actors Buddy Ebsen, Robert Blake and producer/ director Leonard Stern shared often irreverent stories of working with Wolf. "I'll never forget my first look at Harry Wolf in action," said Ebsen, who worked with Wolf during his eight years on The Beverly Hillbillies and Barnaby Jones, among other projects. "There he was in the middle of a set, with one arm around Ellie Mae and the other hand holding a cigar, his mustache twitching, pointing out the intricacies of his lighting techniques."

Robert Rlake, who remembers Wolf as one of the few bulwarks of consistency in the dizzying array of personnel who worked on Baretta, recalled missing Wolf's presence during his own return to television a few years ago: "I went up to Canada to do a movie of the week, and everybody's 12 years old," he related. "I was longing to see one old war horse that I knew, but everyone's got a pigtail and an earring and from the back they all look the same. I felt like I belonged in the La Brea Tar Pits! Once we started shooting, I looked over and there's nobody near the camera everybody's gone except us and the operator. They're all over there in the corner watching this little box. It's like one of those things they have at the 7-11 to see who's stealing the Baby Ruths. It's just something else to get used to - it's scary. And I was wishing that Harry was there next to the box, saying, 'You're gonna be all right, kid, you're gonna be fine, you're doing good, keep your mouth shut, hit the marks, say your jokes, don't push, you've already got the job.'"

Following the reminiscences was a screening of Visions of Light: The Art of Cinematography, in which Wolf appears. In a short speech before the screening, he confessed to being very proud of both the film and his fellow featured cinematographers. However, he noted, " Visions of Light only scratches the surface. There are many, many other cinematographers who are not included. …

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