I had the lifetime experience of having been the stills photographer on the last movie that Vilmos had done, “Six Dance Lessons In Six Weeks“. The man had brought us amazing works such as “Deer Hunter” “Close Encounters Of The Third Kind” “Deliverance” “McCabe & Mrs Miller” and so many more. Long recognized as one of the greatest cinematographers of all time.
Working on set with him, almost daily for seven weeks, he showed himself to be a master of his craft with an incredible ease. And Vilmos worked non-stop, starting the day well before anyone else and long after in the every night. Well into his 80’s he drove everyone much younger by many decades into doing better by just trying to keep up with him.
On the last day of our shooting in Budapest at the wrap party of the movie, Vilmos paid me what everyone tells me is the kindest comment ever. He said “You can work on my sets anytime, you never got in the way”. That still makes me laugh and smile.
I was just watching “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” on Friday thinking how amazing it was that I was the still photographer on one of his movies not that long ago. His last movie as it turns out, “Six Dance Lessons In Six Weeks”. Then yesterday I read the news of the passing of Vilmos Zsigmond, one of the greatest cinematographers of all time.
Vilmos won an Oscar for Close Encounters and was nominated for “The Deer Hunter”, “The River” and “The Black Dahlia”. However you have seen his work in so much more such as “Deliverance”, “Blow Out”, “The Long Goodbye” and “McCabe and Mrs. Miller”.
During the seven weeks on set with Vilmos, I was astounded by his unending energy and drive. He was there before I showed up and was there after I left. And I was on set pretty much longer than anyone. Vilmos had an ease of professionalism and confidence that was so very apparent.
Throughout, more people asked for his autograph than anyone else. At our wrap party, after what was another long day ending at maybe midnight, Vilmos paid me what I was told was about the best compliment ever from him. He said “You can work on my sets anytime, you never got in the way”. Made me laugh then, makes me laugh now. Thanks Vilmos!
On CBS “This Morning” I was excited to see a segment with Rita Moreno. She is only one of 12 people who have been awarded an Oscar, an Emmy, a Grammy and a Tony. She will now also be a Kennedy Center Honoree for her “Lifetime Of Artistic Achievement”.
During the interview on CBS, the link below, as they walked around New York City, they met one man who upon meeting her said he had “goosebumps”. Well I can totally relate the same feeling when I had the opportunity to meet and photograph Rita on the set of the movie “Six Dance Lessons In Six Weeks“. As a standout star of the great American Opera “Westside Story”, she and ‘Westside Story” are embedded in my mind and in my heart.
By the way I must tell you that Rita Moreno is as nice, as fun, as talented and enthusiastic as you can possibly imagine. Here is one of the photographs I shot that has been released. And here is the link to the CBS interview… http://cbsn.ws/1SvvVSK
A feel good, do good movie that especially makes me feel good because I worked on it for 7 weeks as the stills photographer. The movie is set in Florida but was almost entirely shot in Budapest. That was also especially fun. Combined with a heartwarming story, laughter filled time and great music. Topped off with my photographs being used behind the end credits, the publicity photographs in publications around the country and the movie poster. It’s all good! And available on iTunes and Amazon. Yup, Very Fun!
When I was asked to be the stills photographer on the movie “Six Dance Lessons In Six Weeks” I asked who was going to be in it. Gena Rowlands and Rita Moreno were two of the answers. When would I ever have the opportunity to photograph these extraordinary individuals of motion pictures!
Rita Moreno won her Oscar for her role in the motion picture “West Side Story”. Perhaps that does not mean much to you younger than I, but to me it leaves me speechless. “West Side Story” is certainly the great American Opera. The music written by the great composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein. The movie an adaptation brought to life by the greatest names in music and theatre and entertainment. There are no words to describe this incredible and legendary motion picture.
Rita Moreno herself is one of the very few performers to win an Oscar, a Tony, a Grammy and an Emmy. One of the absolute greatest of the world we call entertainment. So when they asked, I said YES!
A filled theatre laughed endlessly at all the right places and tears welled up for the touching moments. An auditorium that filled with applause at the close and credits scrolled across the screen. Even my name was there as “stills photographer”.
Without question, a movie and story that will make you laugh and touch your heart. Great music too! Go see it! Thanks!
I must say that it is very fun to see my photographs in places like the Hollywood Reporter despite the fact that I have been published many thousands of times over.
Go see the movie this weekend just so you can see my photographs in the end credits as well as my name! OK you will also see great names such as Gena Rowlands, Cheyenne Jackson, Rita Moreno, Julian Sands, Jacki Weaver, Kathleen Rose Perkins, Anthony Zerbe. And the work of legendary cinematographer Vilmos Zsigmond. Yes all that and it is great fun. Check the schedule on the website at http://sixdancelessonsmovie.com. Thanks!
Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks – The Movie was 7 Weeks in Budapest, Hungary for me. The movie website features many of my photographs shot as the still photographer on the production. To be released in a few weeks the movie is based on the hit play which has been seen in 24 countries and 14 languages. Starring Gena Rowlands, Cheyenne Jackson and Rita Moreno. Check out the website and trailer and go see the movie, it is great fun! http://sixdancelessonsmovie.com
Last year I was in Budapest, Hungary shooting the still photography on a motion picture. I was surprised that so many people asked “Why do they need photographs from a movie?”. The photographs are used for everything from movies posters, advertising, promotions and more. By example, here is one of my photographs from that movie “Six Dance Lessons In Six Weeks” in the Hollywood Reporter the other day. The movie will be released on December 12th nationwide. And below you can see the movie trailer. It is great fun! Thanks!