Cinematographer Tom Richmond, whose resume has worked on such films as: Stand and deliver, kill zoe, Little Odessa, Beverly Hills Slums and Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist, has passed away. He was 72.
Richmond died Friday in New York City, Anthony Jannelli, director of cinematography at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, said. News Kidda (Richmond also taught at NYU). The cause of death was not immediately known.
Richmond, who was the director of photography for nearly four dozen positions, also shot Keenan Ivory Wayans’ I’m Gonna Git You Sucka (1988), Scott Silver’s Johns (1996), Rob Zombies House of 1000 corpses (2003) and that of Todd Solondz Palindromes (2004).
He won the award for best cinematography at Sundance in 2006 for his work on Directly at your doora drama about a terrorist attack with chemical bombs.
He received Spirit Award nominations for: Stand and deliver (1988), The Breakthrough of Edward James Olmos directed by Ramón Menéndez; Pastime (1990), a love letter to baseball; and the crime drama starring Tim Roth Little Odessa (1994), which marked James Gray’s directorial debut.
Richmond shot every Keith Gordon movie – The Chocolate War (1988), A midnight bright (1992), mother night (1996), Wake the dead (2000) and The singing detective (2003).
And for director Jesse Peretz, he was the DP on First love, last rites (1997), The castle (2001) and the ex (2006).
Richmond “was an older man with a teenage skateboarder vibe. He always referred to himself as the Keith Richards of photography. And in a way he was just that,” Peretz wrote on Facebook.
“He taught me not only so much about photography, but also about character and story. He never wanted the photography to outshine the characters — and that’s how he served his films and their stories, even if it undermined his ability to grab the limelight and promote himself.”
Born in Bronxville, New York, in 1950, Thomas Julian Richmond graduated from Harvard University with a degree in photography.
He attended UCLA Film School from 1976-78 and the American Film Institute from 1979-80, after which he worked as a cinematographer at Alex Cox’s Repo Man (1984) and Oliver Stone’s Salvador (1986).
He and Cox were supposed to reunite for… Straight to hell (1987), hiker (1987) and The winner (1996).
In front of Little Odessahe and Gray decided to use widescreen and shoot in the 2.35 aspect ratio used by Sergio Leone in his spaghetti westerns.
Next to Roger Avary’s kill zoe (1993), Tamara Jenkins’ Beverly Hills Slums (1998) and Peter Sollett’s Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist (2008), Richmond photographed CM Talkington’s Love & a .45 (1994), Ross Kagan Marks’ The twilight of gold (1996), Ethan Hawke’s Chelsea Walls (2001), Brian Koppelman and David Levien’s Knockaround guys (2001), J.P. Schaefer’s Chapter 27 (2007) and that of Rob Meyer A bird guide to everything (2013).
A big music fan – especially punk rock – Richmond has made music videos for Pearl Jam (“Jeremy”), New Order, Iris DeMent, Emmylou Harris, Foo Fighters, Grace Jones, The Go-Go’s, Eric Clapton and more.
In recent years, he has taught at both Brooklyn College and NYU.