Douglas C. Hart, an assistant camera operator on more than 50 feature films including Kramer vs. Kramer and such Woody Allen movies as Manhattan, Hannah and Her Sisters, The Purple Rose of Cairo and Zelig, died Tuesday while under hospice care at an assisted living facility in New York City. He was 73.
His death was announced by the Cinematographers Guild, IATSE Local 600. No official cause was given, but Hart suffered a brain aneurism last year and another crippling health event this week. His family said he died peacefully with his brother Randy and close friend, Gabor Kover, by his side
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“As a member of the camera local, Doug was one of our finest camera technicians, working with many of the best camera crews in our business on over 50 feature films, many commercials and several documentaries,” the guild wrote. “Perhaps most notably, he was the ‘A’ Camera First Assistant on ten movies photographed by one of his heroes, Gordon Willis.”
The Willis collaborations include the Allen films, along with others including The Money Pit, Legal Eagles, Coming to America, Malcolm X, Vanilla Sky, Copland, Private Parts and Johnny Depp’s What’s Eating Gilbert Grape.
Born on February 18, 1950, in Harlem, NY, Hart also was the author of three books: The Camera Assistant: A Complete Professional Handbook, Sherlock Holmes on the Screen and The Christopher Lee Film Encyclopedia.
“Beyond his accomplishments in the field, Doug was most proud of his mentorship to younger filmmakers,” according to the guild. “He taught hundreds of eager young cinematographers throughout the years on the sets of his projects, in classes he designed at the Maine Photographic Seminars and the many workshops he initiated that were sponsored by our union.” He was an oﬃcer in Local 644 and in Local 600 as well as an executive board member throughout his career.
Hart and his father Robert were IATSE Local 52 grip card holders, as was their brother and son Randy.
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