EXPIRED: 08/16/09 – Richard Moore, 83, had a vision – a vision of bigger films as seen from behind a movie camera. His vision was Panavision. And then, like all great ideas, they sucked the life outta him and turned his vision into a desk job.
Moore and Robert Gottschalk founded Panavision in 1953 while they were working at the Campus Camera Shop in Westwood. Through experiments in underwater photography, they were able to create cheaper wide-screen projection lenses. Those lenses met the demands of theaters then showing CinemaScope films, a weapon in the battle against television.
In essense, he developed the cameras and lenses used to produce motion pictures in the groundbreaking 65mm format. Then he quit. It became a “job” and was no longer any fun.
He left Panavision because he wanted to use the lenses and cameras that he had helped design.
After leaving Moore forged an career as a Hollywood cinematographer, with credits including “The Scalphunters” , “The Reivers”, “Myra Breckinridge”, “Sometimes a Great Notion”, “The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean” and “Annie”.
Moore cited “Winning,” starring Paul Newman as a race car driver, as among his favorite films. He designed and built a remote control system that enabled him to use radio signals to operate a camera mounted on the car driven by Newman. That was a revolutionary concept in 1969.
Moore also directed a film, “Circle of Iron,” a 1978 martial arts movie shot in Israel that starred David Carradine, Eli Wallach, Christopher Lee and Roddy McDowall with a story by Bruce Lee, James Coburn and Stirling Silliphant.
He won an Oscar in 1960 for his pioneering 65mm work.