"Lord of the Rings" Cinematographer Andrew Lesnie dies at 59

“Our memories of Andrew will always be of a wonderful and caring person who looked out for the technicians around him, was keen to have a good laugh and keep everyone jollied along even when things were at the most stressful for everyone,” Weta founders Richard and Tania Taylor wrote on Facebook.

Andrew Lesnie, the award winning cinematographer of both “The Lord of the Rings” and “The Hobbit” trilogies, died of a heart attack on April 27th, 2015.  He was 59.

Mr. Lesnie’s career covered nearly 40 years.  His IMDB lists the horror movie “Patrick”, from 1978, as a camera assistant as his first credit.  It was his work on “Babe” (1995) that drew the attention of “Lord of the Rings” producer Peter Jackson.

“I’d never worked with him or even met him before, but he’d shot the ‘Babe’ films and I thought they looked amazing, the way he’d used backlight and the sun and natural light to create a very magical effect,” Jackson said in a 2004 interview with digitalproducer.com “‘Babe’ had that larger-than-life feel about it that I wanted.”

Lesnie won many awards in recognition for his skill, including an Oscar for his work on the first of the Ring series movies, “the Fellowship of the Rings.”

“It is with overwhelming sadness that I inform you of the passing of our dear friend and colleague Andrew Lesnie ACS ASC, who after suffering a serious heart condition over the last six months died suddenly on Monday, 27 April,” wrote Ron Johanson, the national president of the Australian Society of Cinematographers, on Facebook. “Words cannot express the absolute feeling of loss, particularly for his immediate family. Andrew gave us many personal cinema moments, moments that will live with us forever, and yet he has been taken from us way too early, and we are now left with those memories.”

He is survived by his partner and two sons.

To learn more about his extensive work visit his IMDB page.

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