Ralf D Bode


Director Of Photography

About

Also Known As
Ralf Bode
Birth Place
Berlin, DE
Born
March 31, 1941
Died
February 27, 2001
Cause of Death
Lung Cancer

Biography

German-born cinematographer Ralf D Bode immigrated to the USA in 1954 and gravitated to filmmaking in the US Army Signal Corps. After working as a gaffer and lighting designer for director John G Avildsen, he graduated to director of photography duties on a spate of minor films before evoking the gritty, sweaty milieu of disco New York in John Badham's "Saturday Night Fever" (1977). His ...

Family & Companions

Christine Bode
Wife
Second wife.

Biography

German-born cinematographer Ralf D Bode immigrated to the USA in 1954 and gravitated to filmmaking in the US Army Signal Corps. After working as a gaffer and lighting designer for director John G Avildsen, he graduated to director of photography duties on a spate of minor films before evoking the gritty, sweaty milieu of disco New York in John Badham's "Saturday Night Fever" (1977). His first collaboration with director Michael Apted, "Coal Miner's Daughter" (1980), brought him acclaim (and an Oscar nomination) for his effective use of Kentucky and Tennessee locations to evoke the hardscrabble beginnings of country singer Loretta Lynn. In his next pairing with Apted ("Gorky Park" 1983), he helped make Helsinki stand in for Moscow, presenting a plausible portrait of life in the then-current Soviet Union. Bode's films with Apted include two feature documentaries, "Bring on the Night" (1985) and "The Long Way Home," and he also made his directing debut in 1993 for (executive producer) Apted with an episode ("The Harvest") of the ABC series "Crossroads."

Bode's contributions greatly enhanced "Dressed to Kill," Brian De Palma's stylish 1980 exercise in ersatz-Hitchcock suspense-terror, helping maintain the fever pitch from start to finish. In addition to Apted and Avildsen, he has enjoyed multiple feature associations with directors Jack Fisk ("Raggedy Man" 1981, "Violets Are Blue" 1986), Jonathan Kaplan ("The Accused" 1988, "Love Field" 1992, "Bad Girls" 1994) and screenwriter Holly Goldberg Sloan ("The Big Green" 1995, "American Pie" 1999). Bode's best work during the 90s probably came on CBS' adaptations of "Gypsy" (1993, starring Bette Midler) and "A Streetcar Named Desire" (1995, with Jessica Lange and Alec Baldwin) and the spectacular, multi-ethnic "Wonderful World of Disney" presentation of "Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella" (ABC, 1997), starring Brandy in the title role and featuring Whitney Houston, Jason Alexander, Whoopi Goldberg and Bernadette Peters, among others. He was also responsible for the hazy warm look of Anne De Salvo's hysterical 20-minute short, "Women Without Implants" (1997), shown as a segment of "The Lifetime Women's Film Festival."

Filmography

 

Director (Feature Film)

Love Field (1992)
2nd Unit Director (2nd Unit)

Cinematography (Feature Film)

Boys and Girls (2000)
Director Of Photography
Sarah, Plain and Tall: Winter's End (1999)
Director Of Photography
Unglued (1999)
Director Of Photography
The Proposition (1998)
Cinematographer
Rodgers & Hammerstein's Cinderella (1997)
Director Of Photography
A Simple Wish (1997)
Director Of Photography
Hacks (1997)
Director Of Photography
The Big Green (1995)
Director Of Photography
A Streetcar Named Desire (1995)
Director Of Photography
Don Juan de Marco (1994)
Director Of Photography
Bad Girls (1994)
Director Of Photography
Safe Passage (1994)
Director Of Photography
Made In America (1993)
Director Of Photography
Gypsy (1993)
Director Of Photography
Love Field (1992)
Director Of Photography
Leaving Normal (1992)
Director Of Photography
One Good Cop (1991)
Director Of Photography
The Long Way Home (1989)
Cinematographer
Cousins (1989)
Director Of Photography
Uncle Buck (1989)
Director Of Photography
The Accused (1988)
Director Of Photography
Distant Thunder (1988)
Director Of Photography
Critical Condition (1987)
Director Of Photography
The Big Town (1987)
Director Of Photography
The Whoopee Boys (1986)
Director Of Photography
Violets Are Blue (1986)
Director Of Photography
Bring on the Night (1985)
Director Of Photography
Firstborn (1984)
Director Of Photography
Gorky Park (1983)
Director Of Photography
Raggedy Man (1981)
Director Of Photography
A Little Sex (1981)
Director Of Photography
Dressed To Kill (1980)
Director Of Photography
Coal Miner's Daughter (1980)
Director Of Photography
Rich Kids (1979)
Director Of Photography
Slow Dancing In The Big City (1978)
Director Of Photography
Somebody Killed Her Husband (1978)
Director Of Photography
Saturday Night Fever (1977)
Director Of Photography
Hearts and Minds (1975)
Camera Operator
S.O.S. (1975)
Director Of Photography
Saturday Night at the Baths (1974)
Director Of Photography
Foreplay (1974)
Director Of Photography
There Is No 13 (1974)
Director Of Photography

Film Production - Main (Feature Film)

I'm Not Rappaport (1996)
Photography
Moment By Moment (1978)
Technical Advisor

Misc. Crew (Feature Film)

Rodgers & Hammerstein's Cinderella (1997)
Dp/Cinematographer
The Big Green (1995)
Other
A Streetcar Named Desire (1995)
Dp/Cinematographer
Bad Girls (1994)
Dp/Cinematographer
Don Juan de Marco (1994)
Other
Made In America (1993)
Other
Uncle Buck (1989)
Other
The Long Way Home (1989)
Other
Distant Thunder (1988)
Other
The Accused (1988)
Dp/Cinematographer
Gorky Park (1983)
Dp/Cinematographer
Dressed To Kill (1980)
Dp/Cinematographer
Coal Miner's Daughter (1980)
Dp/Cinematographer

Cinematography (Special)

CBS: The First 50 Years (1998)
Director Of Photography
Women Without Implants (1997)
Director Of Photography
John Leguizamo's "Spic-O-Rama" (1993)
Director Of Photography
The Very Best of The Ed Sullivan Show -- II (1991)
Director Of Photography
The Very Best of the Ed Sullivan Show (1991)
Director Of Photography

Misc. Crew (Special)

CBS: The First 50 Years (1998)
Dp/Cinematographer

Cinematography (TV Mini-Series)

The Hunt For the Unicorn Killer (1999)
Director Of Photography
Last Rites (1998)
Director Of Photography

Life Events

1954

family emigrated to Vermont in the USA

1963

After college, attempted to pursue an acting career; appeared on stage in the Off-Broadway productions, "A Man's a Man" and "Best Foot Forward", the latter alongside Liza Minnelli

1966

Served in the US Army Signal Corps as a filmmaker and teacher of combat photography at Fort Monmouth, New Jersey

1972

Began his feature career as a gaffer and lighting designer for director John G Avildsen on "The Stoolie"

1974

First films as director of photography, "Foreplay" (co-directed by Avildsen), "Saturday Night at the Baths" and "There Is No 13"

1976

Did second unit photography on Avildsen's "Rocky", including the famous shot of Rocky running up the steps of the Museum of Art in Philadelphia

1977

Breakthrough feature as cinematographer, "Saturday Night Fever", helmed by John Badham

1978

Reteamed with Avildsen as director of photography on "Slow Dancing in the City"

1980

Received Oscar nomination for his cinematography on "Coal Miner's Daughter", starring Sissy Spacek as Loretta Lynn; first film with director Michael Apted

1981

Collaborated with art director-turned-helmer Jack Fisk (Spacek's husband) on Fisk's feature directing debut, "Raggedy Man", starring Spacek

1983

Reteamed with Apted for "Gorky Park"

1985

First documentary feature with Apted, "Bring on the Night", chronicled the formation of Sting's post-Police rock-jazz band, culminating in their first concert performance

1986

Reteamed with Fisk and Spacek on "Violets Are Blue"

1987

Played a judge in Apted's "Critical Condition"; also worked as director pf photography

1989

As one of four cinematographers, contributed to Apted's "The Long Way Home", a documentary about Soviet underground rock star Boris Grebenshikov; last feature collaboration (to date) with the director

1992

Worked as 2nd unit director on Jonathan Kaplan's "Love Field"; also served as cinematographer

1992

Crossed paths with Apted (executive producer) on ABC series "Crossroads", serving as director of photography on an untitled episode directed by Apted and directing the episodes "The Harvest"

1993

Was director of photography on two high-profile small screen projects: "John Leguizamo's 'Spic-O-Rama'" (HBO) and the CBS remake of the musical "Gypsy", for which he earned an Emmy nod

1993

First association with screenwriter Holly Goldberg Sloan, Richard Benjamin's "Made in America"; Sloan's first produced script

1995

Served as director of photography for Sloan's directorial debut, "The Big Green"

1995

Was cinematographer on the CBS remake of "A Streetcar Named Desire", starring Jessica Lange

1997

Returned to musicals as the director of photography for "Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella", a presentation of ABC's "Wonderful World of Disney"

1999

Shot "American Pie", co-helmed by Paul and Chris Weitz from a script by Holly Goldberg Sloan

1999

Served as cinematographer for the ABC/Disney adaptation of "Annie"; earned Emmy nomination

Videos

Movie Clip

Coal Miner's Daughter (1980) - Fire In The Hole! Director Michael Apted's opening and a scene that helped popularize the now common phrase, also introducing Sissy Spacek playing singer Loretta Lynn, musician Levon Helm her father and Tommy Lee Jones her future husband, in Coal Miner's Daughter, 1980.
Coal Miner's Daughter (1980) - Go Ask Daddy A scene singer Loretta Lynn says is recreated very much as it happened, Butcher Hollow, Kentucky, 1948, Sissy Spacek as the star, not yet 16, Tommy Lee Jones her beau Doolittle Lynn, Levon Helm and Phyllis Boyens her parents, in Coal Miner's Daughter, 1980.
Coal Miner's Daughter (1980) - Who's That Sow? Kentucky, 1948, Sissy Spacek as singer Loretta Lynn, age 16, visiting the doctor after informally separating from her husband Doolittle Lynn (Tommy Lee Jones), whom she encounters outside, in Michael Apted's celebrated bio-pic Coal Miner's Daughter, 1980.
Saturday Night Fever - Open, Stayin' Alive The Bee Gees' "Stayin' Alive" carries the opening sequence, Tony (John Travolta) cruising the streets of Brooklyn, in director John Badham's disco hit Saturday Night Fever, 1977.
Saturday Night Fever - Watch The Hair! Tony (John Travolta) in his elaborate dressing sequence, Bee Gees music, father (Val Bisoglio) dragging him downstairs to dinner, in Saturday Night Fever, 1977, directed by John Badham.
Saturday Night Fever - Nineteen At The Moment Tony (John Travolta) checks in with Pete (Bert Michaels) at the dance studio and introduces himself to Stephanie (Karen Lynn Gorney), a key scene in Saturday Night Fever, 1977.
Saturday Night Fever - Tango Hustle Tony (John Travolta) and Stephanie (Karen Lynn Gorney), new partners, at their first rehearsal before the big disco contest, in Saturday Night Fever, 1977, directed by John Badham.
Saturday Night Fever - Father Frank Junior Tony (John Travolta) finds the family distraught because his brother, Father Frank Jr. (Martin Shakar), has come home to announce he's leaving the priesthood, in Saturday Night Fever, 1977.
Saturday Night Fever - Dog Eat Dog World Quick scenes shape the world of Brooklyn hero Tony Manero (John Travolta), with buddies, his boss, and with his dad (Val Bisoglio) in director John Badham's Saturday Night Fever, 1977.
Saturday Night Fever - Disco Inferno Tony Manero (John Travolta) leads his posse (Barry Miller, Paul Pape, Joseph Cali) into the 2001 Odyssey disco in Brooklyn, then dances with Annette (Donna Pescow) in Saturday Night Fever, 1977, directed by John Badham.

Trailer

Family

Peer Bode
Brother
Paul Bode
Son
Assistant cameraman.
Max Bode
Son

Companions

Christine Bode
Wife
Second wife.

Bibliography