Jordan Cronenweth


Director Of Photography

About

Also Known As
Jordan Scott Cronenweth
Birth Place
Los Angeles, California, USA
Born
February 20, 1935
Died
November 29, 1996
Cause of Death
Parkinson's Disease

Biography

Jordan Cronenweth was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in 1978, yet though often fighting pain, he not only continued to work as one of Hollywood's premiere directors of photography into the 90s, but also did some of his most innovative work after the diagnosis. Cronenweth is best recalled for his hallucinogenic lighting of "Altered States" (1980), the luminous and yet at the same time...

Family & Companions

Carole Lieu
Wife
Divorced.
Shane Cronenweth
Wife
Divorced.

Notes

"OK. Here's Jordan. Jordan loved women, but his mistress was light." --commercial director Melvin Sokolsky in Daily Variety, February 21, 1997.

Biography

Jordan Cronenweth was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in 1978, yet though often fighting pain, he not only continued to work as one of Hollywood's premiere directors of photography into the 90s, but also did some of his most innovative work after the diagnosis. Cronenweth is best recalled for his hallucinogenic lighting of "Altered States" (1980), the luminous and yet at the same time neo-expressionistic lighting of Ridley Scott's "Blade Runner" (1982), which won the Best Cinematography BAFTA Award, and Francis Ford Coppola's "Peggy Sue Got Married" (1986), which earned an Oscar nomination for his elegiac use of lighting that bespoke time, mood, place, and remembrance.

Cronenweth was the son of a studio still photographer and a Busby Berkeley dancer who began working as an assistant camera operator in the mid-60s, and learned his craft under the great Conrad L. Hall. He was the operator for "In Cold Blood" (1966), for which Hall received an Academy Award nomination. By 1970, Cronenweth was a DP in his own right, working for director Robert Altman on "Brewster McCloud." He did some very mainstream Hollywood films in the 70s, including the 1974 remake of "The Front Page" and "Gable and Lombard" (1976), but by the 80s was working on more cutting-edge material, often independents. Cronenweth was heralded for his work on such films as "Cutter's Way" (1981), which offered haunting yet subdued imagery, and shot the performance documentary "U2: Rattle and Hum" (1988). "Final Analysis" (1992) was Cronenweth's last feature film. Through the years, Cronenweth was also director of photography and/or director of more than 50 TV commercials, including the famous musical ads for Dr. Pepper in the 70s. Additionally, he worked occasionally in TV (e.g., "Birds of Prey," CBS 1973; "One in a Million: The Ron LeFlore Story," CBS 1978).

Filmography

 

Cast (Feature Film)

Carbine Williams (1952)
Will Williams

Cinematography (Feature Film)

Final Analysis (1992)
Director Of Photography
Get Back (1991)
Cinematographer
State Of Grace (1990)
Director Of Photography
U2 Rattle and Hum (1988)
Director Of Photography (Color)
Gardens Of Stone (1987)
Director Of Photography
Just Between Friends (1986)
Director Of Photography
Peggy Sue Got Married (1986)
Director Of Photography
Stop Making Sense (1984)
Cinematographer
Best Friends (1982)
Director Of Photography
Blade Runner (1982)
Director Of Photography
Blade Runner: The Final Cut (1982)
Director Of Photography
Cutter's Way (1981)
Director Of Photography
Altered States (1980)
Director Of Photography
Transplant (1979)
Director Of Photography
And I Alone Survived (1978)
Director Of Photography
One In A Million: The Ron Le Flore Story (1978)
Director Of Photography
Citizens Band (1977)
Director Of Photography
Rolling Thunder (1977)
Director Of Photography
Gable and Lombard (1976)
Director Of Photography
The Nickel Ride (1975)
Director Of Photography
Count Your Bullets (1974)
Director of Photography
The Touch of Satan (1974)
Cinematographer
Zandy's Bride (1974)
Director Of Photography
The Front Page (1974)
Director Of Photography
Birds Of Prey (1973)
Director Of Photography
Play It As It Lays (1972)
Director of Photography
Brewster McCloud (1970)
Director of Photography
The Liberation of L. B. Jones (1970)
2nd unit Photographer
Trilogy (1969)
Director of Photography
Yours, Mine, and Ours (1968)
Camera Operator
Hell in the Pacific (1968)
Camera Operator
In Cold Blood (1967)
Camera Operator
Ride Beyond Vengeance (1966)
Assistant Camera
Harper (1966)
Assistant Camera

Special Thanks (Feature Film)

Alien 3 (1992)
Thanks

Misc. Crew (Feature Film)

Final Analysis (1992)
Dp/Cinematographer
Get Back (1991)
Other
Get Back (1991)
Consultant
State Of Grace (1990)
Other
Gardens Of Stone (1987)
Dp/Cinematographer
Peggy Sue Got Married (1986)
Dp/Cinematographer
Blade Runner (1982)
Dp/Cinematographer
Best Friends (1982)
Dp/Cinematographer
Altered States (1980)
Dp/Cinematographer
One In A Million: The Ron Le Flore Story (1978)
Other
Zandy's Bride (1974)
Dp/Cinematographer

Life Events

1966

First film credits, as camera operator assistant to Hall on "Harper" and the Oscar-nominated "The Professionals"

1970

First film as director of photography, "Brewster McCloud"

1973

Was DP on first TV-movie, "Birds of Prey" (CBS)

1978

Diagnosed with Parkinson's disease

1980

Shot "Altered States", directed by Ken Russell

1982

Breakthrough feature credit, "Blade Runner", directed by Ridley Scott; won BAFTA Award

1992

Final feature "Final Analysis"

Videos

Movie Clip

Peggy Sue Got Married (1986) — (Movie Clip) What We Said On Tuesday Peggy (Kathleen Turner) knows she’s time-traveled back to 1960 from the ’85 high school reunion but her mom, dad and sister (Barbara Harris, Don Murray and Sofia Coppola, the director Francis’ daughter) just think she’s acting strange (since she fainted at the blood drive the day before), as does boyfriend and future husband Charlie (Nicolas Cage) picking her up for school, in Peggy Sue Got Married, 1986.
Peggy Sue Got Married (1986) — (Movie Clip) A King And A Queen Kathleen Turner (title character at her 25th reunion) is upset because her recent-ex Charlie (Nicolas Cage) unexpectedly showed up, then nerd-turned billionaire Richard (Barry Miller) is named king and she’s queen, in her dress from back-then, Jim Carrey heckling, Helen Hunt her daughter, Wil Shriner the M-C, and Marshall Crenshaw, who would play Buddy Holly in La Bamba, 1987, leading the band, in Francis Ford Coppola’s Peggy Sue Got Married, 1986.
Peggy Sue Got Married (1986) — (Movie Clip) Richard’s Burrito Getting a better grip on things since she passed out at the ’85 high school reunion and time-traveled back to 1960, Kathleen Turner (title character in her Best-Actress nominated role) has arranged to meet nerdy future billionaire Richard (Barry Miller) in the physics lab, in Francis Coppola’s sleeper hit from his Zoetrope Studios, Peggy Sue Got Married, 1986.
Best Friends (1982) - I Started Getting Cold In Arizona Married now but uneasy, in the screenplay by married Valerie Curtin and Barry Levinson, screenwriters Richard and Paula (Burt Reynolds, Goldie Hawn) arrive in wintry Buffalo (on location, at the now-defunct but still-standing Central Terminal), meeting her parents, Barnard Hughes and Jessica Tandy, in Best Friends, 1982.
Zandy's Bride (1974) - I Told You No Frills Home from riding his California coastal ranch, the day after an apparent marital night rape, Zandy (Gene Hackman) returns to his mail-order wife Hannah (Liv Ullmann), the exact time period not established, Swedish director Jan Troell reluctant to move the camera, in Zandy's Bride, 1974.
Zandy's Bride (1974) - What Else Did You Lie About? Swedish director Jan Troell, having bitten off a big chunk of Big Sur landscape in the opening, brings rancher Zandy (Gene Hackman), into a town where he is immediately disappointed when he meets his mail-order bride (Liv Ullmann), in Zandy’s Bride, 1974.
Best Friends (1982) - Don't Call Me That In a downtown LA wedding chapel, very tentative screenwriting couple Richard and Paula (Burt Reynolds, Goldie Hawn) have decided to tie the knot, finding the ever-screwy Richard Libertini ready to officiate, in Best Friends, 1982, by married screenwriters Valerie Curtin and Barry Levinson.
Best Friends (1982) - You Don't Have The Right Shoes? Norman Jewison directing, exteriors and interiors at the Warner Bros. studio, unmarried screenwriting couple Richard and Paula (Burt Reynolds, Goldie Hawn) arrive for their meeting with fussy producer Larry (Ron Silver), Peggy Walton-Walker his assistant, in the Valerie Curtin-Barry Levinson original, Best Friends, 1982.
Best Friends (1982) - Sounds Like Bad Tennessee Williams Clever gender-joke opening, Norman Jewison directing from the original screenplay by husband and wife Valerie Curtin and Barry Levinson, Burt Reynolds and Goldie Hawn as not-married screenwriting couple Richard and Paula, in Best Friends, 1982.

Trailer

Family

William E Cronenweth
Father
Photographer. Academy Award-winning still photographer.
Rosita Cronenweth
Mother
Former dancer. Appeared with the Busby Berkeley Dance Comapny; survived him.
Jeff Cronenweth
Son
Director of photography, assistant cameraman. Survived him.
Timothy Cronenweth
Son
Production assistant. Survived him.
Christie Lynn Cronenweth
Daughter
Survived him.

Companions

Carole Lieu
Wife
Divorced.
Shane Cronenweth
Wife
Divorced.

Bibliography

Notes

"OK. Here's Jordan. Jordan loved women, but his mistress was light." --commercial director Melvin Sokolsky in Daily Variety, February 21, 1997.