Just yesterday the sad news hit that Andrew Lesnie, the Oscar-winning cinematographer who worked with Peter Jackson on Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit films, has died from a heart attack at the far too young age of 59.
The Sydney-born Lesnie had a career spanning a whopping 35-plus in the business – his other worked included Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Jackson’s King Kong (he clearly had a talent for visualizing CGI primates on-screen) and most recently Russell Crowe’s directorial debut The Water Diviner.
But it was his work particularly on Lord of the Rings – he won his Oscar specifically for Fellowship of the Ring, dedicating the award to his partner and two sons – that really made his name and the films just simply wouldn’t look as visually stunning without his amazing talent as a cinematographer. Long-time collaborator Jackson hasn’t released an official statement yet but word from his production house Weta Digital in New Zealand is as follows:
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.
Andrew Lesnie was a fantastic talent whose cinematic magic will be sorely missed. Our thoughts go out to his friends and family. R.I.P., sir.