Saturday, September 23, 2006


I will tell you what truly sucks, what hurts my heart, what makes an otherwise bliss-filled Saturday in Columbus go moldy and sour:

I’ve just heard that Sven Nykvist died on Wednesday at the age of 83. For those who share my deep adoration and respect for him, you know that cinema has lost one of the finest directors of photography ever to live. For those of you who might not know his name, you most certainly know his work:

Nykvist lit many of Ingmar Bergman's films, including one of my all-time favorites, Persona. He also won 2 Academy Awards for best cinematography for other Bergman films, Cries and Whispers in 1973 and Fanny and Alexander in 1982.

Other primo examples of his artistic genius can be seen in Lasse Hallström’s What's Eating Gilbert Grape; A few memorable Woody Allen films including Crimes and Misdemeanors; Philip Kaufman’s adaptation of The Unbearable Lightness of Being; and Bob Fosse’s Star 80.

His influence on cinema simply can't be overstated. Personally, I don't think we would have visionary contemporary cinematographers like Emmanuel Lubezki or Darius Khondji without the significant contribution of their predecessor, Sven Nykvist, the Swedish forefather of light.

(12/3/1922 - 9/20/2006)