Magazine article American Cinematographer

In Memoriam

Magazine article American Cinematographer

In Memoriam

Article excerpt

Harry Wolf, ASC, four-time ASC president and a veteran of 50 years in motion pictures, died November 10 at Cedars Sinai Hospice. Wolf became an ASC member in 1963 and had served on the board of directors since 1966. He was vice president and treasurer priorto his final illness and was active on many committees, including the annual ASC Awards programs. ASC President Victor J. Kemper called Wolf "loyal, dedicated and caring ... [his passing is] a great loss to the ASC."

Born in San Francisco, Wolf came to Los Angeles in 1934, having left college to become an assistant cameraman at Monogram Pictures. Two years later he moved from Poverty Row to the heady atmosphere of Selznick International Pictures at the RKO Pathé "Forty Acres" lot in Culver City. He worked there as an assistant and operator on many outstanding pictures, including Prisoner of Zenda, The Young in Heart, Gone with the Wind [he was the last surviving member of the GWTW camera crew), Intermezzo, Rebecca, Made for Each Other and Duel in the Sun. He also worked for 2 1/2 years in the Selznick special photographic effects department with Jack Cosgrove, ASC and Clarence Slifer, ASC.

As a free-lancer Wolf worked at all the major studios on more theatrical features than he could name. These included South of Pago Pago, For Whom the Bell Tolls, National Velvet, Ten Gentlemen from West Point, The Broken Arrow, Anchors Aweigh, Salome, Bathing Beauty, Captain from Castile and The Yearling. Wolf's long familiarity with the cumbersome three-strip Technicolor equipment led to a contract with Technicolor under which he was assigned to work at various studios, usually without screen credit, as co-cinematographer on many films made with the difficult process. His contributions to Yolanda and the Thief, Destination Moon and other landmark color films is evident. Universal, impressed in particular by his work in Val Lewton's last production, Apache Drums, made a deal with Technicolor to keep Wolf at Universal City full-time as their color advisor. Bend of the Hiver, Thunder Bay, Cochise, Tap Roots and The Glenn Miller Story were among his notable features at Universal.

Wolf later became a director of photography in television and photographed more than 500 productions. …

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