1936

[Right] with dir Rex Ingram [sitting]

& Alice Terry [left]

"The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse" [1921]

[Right] with dir Sam Wood

"The Fair Co-Ed" [1927]

               

JOHN F. SEITZ

Born: 23 June 1892, Chicago, Illinois, USA, as John Francis Seitz.

Died: 27 February 1979, Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, Calif., USA.

Career: Entered the film industry in 1909 as lab asst with the Essanay Film Manufacturing Company in Chicago. Went to work as lab technician and title ph for the American Film Manufacturing Company ['Flying A'], also in Chicago. When one of Flying A's executives, Gilbert P. Hamilton, moved to the St. Louis Motion Picture Company, Seitz followed, and in 1914 went to the western branch in Santa Paula, outside of Los Angeles. In 1914 he went to work, again as a lab man, for Fred Balshofer's company in Los Angeles. His debut as doph was in 1916 with the American Film Manufacturing Company in Santa Barbara, California. Between 1920 and 1926, he ph 12 films for dir Rex Ingram. From 1925-26 he was permanently based in the Victorine Studios [owned by Ingram and rented to MGM] in Nice, France. Was scheduled to ph 'Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ' in Italy [with dir Rex Ingram] and invented and patented the matte shot to use in that film, but a dispute with the newly formed MGM deterred their participation. He returned to Hollywood at the behest of William Randolph Hearst to photograph Marion Davies and did one of her biggest successes, 'The Patsy' [1928]. Ph 5 films with Shirley Temple. During the 1920s, he was the highest paid doph and the only one to receive credit in advertising. After retiring in 1960, he devoted himself to photographic inventions for which he held 18 patents.

Was a member of the ASC since 1923, and its president in 1929-30.

The ASC named the 2002 Heritage Award after John F. Seitz. He was among the inaugural winners of the George Eastman House's 'George Award' in 1957 for his achievements between 1915-1925 along with 5 actors, 5 actresses, 5 directors and 4 other cinematographers [Arthur Edeson, Harold Rosson, Charles Rosher, and Lee Garmes].

Some sources tell us that dir George B. Seitz [1888-1944] was his brother. However, they were good friends and sometime collaborators, but they were not related.

Awards: 'Oscar' AA nom [1928/9] for 'The Divine Lady'; 'Oscar' AA nom [1943; b&w] for 'Five Graves to Cairo'; 'Oscar' AA nom [1944; b&w], Look Magazine Award [1946] & Golden Globe Award for 'Double Indemnity'; 'Oscar' AA nom [1945; b&w] for 'The Lost Weekend'; 'Oscar' AA nom [1950; b&w] & Golden Globe Award nom [1950] for 'Sunset Blvd.'; 'Oscar' AA nom [1951; color; shared] for 'When Worlds Collide'; 'Oscar' AA nom [1954; b&w] for 'Rogue Cop'.



> Go to FILMS


[Right] with dir Rex Ingram

John F. Seitz and director Rex Ingram:

> 'It was in the mid-twenties that strongly individual styles began to emerge. John F. Seitz began to use Rembrandt's North light in films made with Rex Ingram and the results were markedly individual.' [Charles Higham, 'Hollywood Cameramen', Indiana University Press, 1970.]

> 'I realized how particular Ingram was about his films. So I would set things up before - give him two choices,' said John Seitz. 'I'd make the setups and he'd say yes or no. He liked initiative.' [Donald Chase, 'Filmmaking: The Collaborative Art', Little Brown, 1975.]

> 'John F. Seitz, an outstanding cinematographer, particularly with actresses, had been engaged by [Rex] Ingram to give special attention to the film's ['The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse'] female lead but his skill also flatters Valentino and lends him a beauty and attractiveness he had never been treated to in earlier films.' [Alexander Walker, 'Rudolph Valentino', Stein & Day, 1976.]

> 'Ingram was a great pictorialist; everything in his pictures was subordinate to the image. Collaborating with a cameraman of genius, John Seitz, he created some of the most beautiful films of the entire silent era.' [Kevin Brownlow/John Kobal, 'Hollywood: The Pioneers', Alfred A. Knopf, 1979.]

> 'The rich subtle photography by John Seitz brought a quality to the film ['The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse'] which equaled that of the German productions then being heard of in America. ...and lay the credit for the artistic success of 'Scaramouche' at the feet of John Seitz. His work deserves a richer description than that of mere 'photography' for it achieves a standard of interpretation few cameramen could even understand, let alone duplicate. They [Seitz and Ingram] worked together as a team and understood each other's requirements.' [Liam O'Leary, 'Rex Ingram', The Academy Press, 1980.]

'Where [others] might be inclined to play it safe by using tried and true techniques, John F. Seitz doesn't hesitate to stick his neck out to try for the unusual and original effect - and he invariably comes up with an exciting result. Far from being a trickster out to create an effect for its own sake, [he] remains an alert experimentalist, constantly searching for new approaches and original camera techniques to make the motion picture a more dramatic medium. There are no clichés in his style - as modern as tomorrow, rugged, forceful and, above all, alive. He insists that cinematography must exist to tell the screen story, rather than stand out as a separate artistic entity.' [Herb Lightman, 'Old Master, New Tricks' in 'American Cinematographer', September 1950.]

[Center]

'The man who made a profound impact on me was John F. Seitz. He changed the whole course of my photographic endeavors, gave me a completely new vision. 'The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse' was the first film that perfected the modern style of photography, the Rembrandt principle. You become conscious of the back wall as part of the unit of the lighting. So you leave a deep shadow on the face and light up the back wall. You have as good a definition as by keeping the back wall dark and blasting the subject with a lamp right over the top of your magazines. Seitz was kind of a dreamer. Fred Gage, lab superintendent at Metro, used to stand anxiously over the developing tanks at night, praying there was something on Seitz's film because he was a very low-key light man. Fred would say: 'Oh, God... be something!' and he'd shove it back in the soup and eventually it'd show an image… Seitz had a corridor scene of the period, dusty and cobwebby. He was busy lighting it with his gaffer the day Fred Gage appeared on the set to report to Seitz on how the negative was the night before. Johnny was busy lighting his long hallway while Fred stood around watching him. Finally, he walked over to Seitz and said: 'Well, I've got to go back to the lab. Let's turn them on and see how it looks.' He figured he could convince [Seitz] to add a little more light. Johnny said: 'Hey Fred, they're already on.' He may have been a problem to the lab but Seitz's concepts were absolutely revolutionary for the day. In most cases he carried them out with enough light to be able to see them and sometimes he didn't - he loved dark effects. Seitz changed the style of motion picture photography. I cannot stress this enough, that an individual man changed the whole course of this complex art. He made movie shots a composite - background and foreground becoming a unit, an artistic concept - the Rembrandt principle.' [Joe Adamson, 'Byron Haskin', Directors Guild of America, 1984.]

·····

'Harry Lachman appeared at my elbow and addressed the worried cameraman as Johnny. I realized that this was John F. Seitz, who had photographed 'The Four Horsemen', 'Scaramouche', and all Rex Ingram's great movies. I had never even held a Kodak in my hands at the time, but I already knew most of the big names and felt the difference between Billy Bitzer's harsh realism and Johnny Seitz's impressionism, which was to reach its fullest expression in Billy Wilder's 'Double Indemnity' thirty years later. I have always been amazed at the apparent sophistication of these early cameramen, but it must be remembered that they worked with sunlight before sun-arcs, used huge sheets of gauze to filter the light, and, through half-closed eyes, were already studying the problems of telling a story with actors in a natural setting. These pioneers of motion picture storytelling were also pioneers of surrealism, for every film is surrealistic to a certain degree. [...] Johnny was a painter in light, in the tradition of drawings and gouaches by the masters. There were scenes in 'Scaramouche' worthy of Watteau, in 'Mare Nostrum' of Monet. [...] I know that Rex and Harry were unfairly disappointed with Johnny Seitz's work on 'The Magician', and wanted to work with one of the new men and yet - and yet - when I saw 'Double Indemnity' thirty years later, one of the most brilliant and sophisticated films that even Billy Wilder ever made, John F. Seitz was the lighting cameraman.' [Michael Powell, 'A Life in Movies', Alfred A. Knopf, 1986.]

Cast and crew "The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse" [1921]

[Right] with dir Rex Ingram [right/sitting]

'John F. Seitz is best known for his work in black and white, especially on the film noirs he did for Billy Wilder, and 'This Gun for Hire'. But in the 1950's he did some color pictures. His style was distinctive. He tended to like beige or tan backgrounds. Against these would be broad expanses of color, either from the characters' costumes, or regions of the set. The colors were brilliant, but with just a hint of dark tone in them. The whole effect is a little darker than the pastel shaded Hollywood musicals of the era. There is a sense of unusual color harmonies to every scene, that remind one a little of Veronese. Even in the color pictures, he liked lustrous blacks and intense whites. There are also fiery reds.

Seitz' photography for 'Hail the Conquering Hero' is very beautiful. The images have a harmonious quality of balance. Partly this is due to Sturges' meaningful staging, partly to Seitz' camera. Different regions of Seitz' frames often have different intensities of light. For example, the background might be strongly lit, the middle ground dark, the foreground trees moderately lit. Or Seitz will have one wall of a room strongly illuminated, the others in varying degrees of shade. As a general approach, this allows Seitz to break the screen down into a number of geometric regions, thus helping him create interesting compositions. The sense of visual balance among these regions is strong. Another common Seitz technique: using sharply outlined shadows against one wall. These shadows are not the vague, overlapping [but beautiful] irregular patterns of [Harry] Stradling. Nor are they the diffused, continuously modulating, almost oceanic background shadows of Victor Milner, that add so much complexity and visual interest to the walls of his sets. By contrast, in Seitz the shadows are well defined marks of a single, complex object, such as a tree or metal grill work. The shadow outline is beautiful in itself. It is plainly visible to the audience, and easily recognized as a tree, etc., by the audience. It adds a nice grace note to one section of Seitz' frame. Unlike [Joseph] Valentine, at least in this movie Seitz is not too interested in having the shadows fall over the characters' faces or bodies. Or even dominate the whole frame, as Valentine's large shadows often do in 'Saboteur'. Instead, Seitz' shadows here tend to be concentrated within one clearly marked off region of the screen, one of several such regions, each clearly demarcated by its own intensity of light. The shadows in Seitz are dark enough to be clearly seen. But they tend not to become the deep black found in Arthur Miller, or even more intensively in the Chiaroscuro style of early [Arthur] Edeson.' [From the ASC website.]



 FILMS [1 reel = c. 10m]

1916

The Quagmire [Tom Chatterton] b&w; 3 reels; prod American Film Manufacturing Company (AFMC) ('Mustang' brand)

1916

The Ranger of Lonesome Gulch [Tom Chatterton] b&w; 3 reels; prod AFMC ('Mustang' brand)

1916

Whose Wife? [Rollin S. Sturgeon] b&w; 5 reels; prod AFMC

1917

Edged Tools/The Serpent's Tooth [Rollin S. Sturgeon] b&w; 5 reels; prod AFMC

1917

Souls in Pawn [Henry King] b&w; 5 reels; prod AFMC

1917

The Bride's Silence/The Unafraid [Henry King] b&w; 5 reels; prod AFMC

1917

A Game of Wits [Henry King] b&w; 5 reels; prod AFMC

1917

The Mate of the Sally Ann/Peggy Rebels [Henry King] b&w; 5 reels; prod AFMC

1917

Beauty and the Rogue [Henry King] b&w; 5 reels; prod AFMC

1918

Powers That Prey [Henry King] b&w; 5 reels; prod AFMC

1918

Up Romance Road [Henry King] b&w; 5 reels; prod William Russell Prods

1919

The Westerners [Edward Sloman] b&w; prod Great Authors Pictures (GAP)/Benjamin B. Hampton Prods

1919

The Sagebrusher/Out of the Dark [Edward Sloman] b&w; cph: Clark Bond; prod GAP

1920

Shore Acres [Rex Ingram] b&w; 6 reels; after shooting some tests, J.F. Seitz was chosen to replace ph Stephen Norton (?) during production; prod Metro Pictures Corporation (MPC)

1920

Hearts Are Trumps [Rex Ingram] b&w; 6 reels; prod MPC

Rex Ingram [left] - John F. Seitz - Alice Terry

"The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse"

June Mathis - Rudolph Valentino - John F. Seitz - Rex Ingram

"The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse"

1921

The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse [Rex Ingram] b&w; prod MPC

1921

Uncharted Seas [Wesley Ruggles] b&w; 6 reels; cph: Sol Polito;  prod MPC

1921

The Conquering Power/Eugénie Grandet [Rex Ingram] b&w; prod MPC

1921

Turn to the Right [Rex Ingram] b&w; prod MPC

1922

The Prisoner of Zenda [Rex Ingram] b&w; prod MPC

1922

Trifling Women [Rex Ingram] b&w; prod MPC

1922

Where the Pavement Ends [Rex Ingram & (uncred) Alice Terry] b&w; prod MPC

1922

Outcast [Chet Withey] b&w; or ph Ernest Haller; prod Famous Players-Lasky Corporation

1923

Scaramouche [Rex Ingram] b&w; prod MPC

1924

The Arab [Rex Ingram] b&w; prod Metro-Goldwyn Pictures Corporation

1924

The Price of a Party [Charles Giblyn] b&w; 6 reels; prod Howard Estabrook Prods

1924

Classmates/Winning Through [John S. Robertson] b&w; cph: Roy Overbaugh; prod Inspiration Pictures

1925

Mare Nostrum/Our Sea [Rex Ingram] b&w; silent & sound versions; took more than a year to complete; prod Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures (MGM)

1926

The Magician [Rex Ingram] b&w; prod MGM

1927

The Fair Co-Ed [Sam Wood] b&w; prod MGM/Cosmopolitan Pictures

1927

The Trail of '98 [Clarence Brown] b&w; silent & sound (music + efx) versions; prod MGM

1927

Across to Singapore [William Nigh] b&w; prod MGM

1928

The Patsy/The Politic Flapper [King Vidor] b&w; restored in 2004 with new score; prod MGM/Cosmopolitan Pictures

1928

Outcast [William A. Seiter] b&w; silent & sound (music + efx) versions; prod First National Pictures (FN)

1928

Adoration [Frank Lloyd] b&w; silent & sound versions; prod FN

1928

The Divine Lady [Frank Lloyd] b&w; assoc ph: Ralph Hammeras & Alvin Knechtel; film survived in 2 worn versions in Czechoslovakia, an American Vitaphone version and a foreign silent version comprised of alternate takes; other footage was found in a Warner Bros. vault; restored in 1989; prod FN/The Vitaphone Corporation

1929

Saturday's Children [Gregory La Cava] b&w; silent & sound versions; prod Walter Morosco Prods

1929

The Squall [Alexander Korda] b&w; spph: Alvin Knechtel; silent & sound versions; prod FN/The Vitaphone Corporation

1929

Careers [John Francis Dillon] b&w; silent & sound (talking + singing seq) versions; prod FN

1929

Hard to Get/Classified [William Beaudine] b&w; silent & sound versions; prod FN

1929

Her Private Life [Alexander Korda] b&w; silent & sound versions; prod FN

1929

A Most Immoral Lady [John Griffith Wray] b&w; silent & sound versions; prod FN

1929

The Painted Angel/The Broadway Hostess [Millard Webb] b&w; 68m; silent & sound versions; prod FN

1929

In the Next Room [Edward F. Cline] b&w; 69m

1930

Murder Will Out [Clarence Badger] b&w

1930

Back Pay [William A. Seiter] b&w; 63m

1930

Sweethearts and Wives [Clarence Badger] b&w

1930

Road to Paradise [William Beaudine] b&w; silent & sound versions; prod FN

1930

The Bad Man [Clarence Badger] b&w

1930

Kismet [John Francis Dillon] Vitascope (65mm/5-perf) & 35mm/b&w-c

1930

The Right of Way [Frank Lloyd] b&w; 68m

1930

East Lynne [Frank Lloyd] b&w

1931

Misbehaving Ladies/A Main Street Princess/Once There Was a Princess [William Beaudine] b&w

1931

Young Sinners [John G. Blystone] b&w

1931

Men of the Sky [Alfred E. Green] b&w

1931

Hush Money [Sidney Lanfield] b&w; 68m

1931

Merely Mary Ann [Henry King] b&w

1931

She Wanted a Millionaire [John G. Blystone] b&w

1931

The Age for Love [Frank Lloyd] b&w; cph: Harry Fischbeck

1931

Over the Hill [Henry King] b&w; filmed April-May & September-October

1932

Careless Lady [Kenneth MacKenna] b&w; 68m; cph: George Schneiderman

1932

The Woman in Room 13 [Henry King] b&w; 67m

1932

A Passport to Hell/Burnt Offering [Frank Lloyd] b&w

1932

Six Hours to Live [William Dieterle] b&w

1932

Cavalcade [Frank Lloyd] b&w; 2uc (war scenes dir by William Cameron Menzies); ph: Ernest Palmer

1932

Ladies They Talk About/Women in Prison [Howard Bretherton & William Keighley] b&w; 68m

1932

Dangerously Yours [Frank Tuttle] b&w

1933

Adorable [William Dieterle] b&w

1933

Paddy the Next Best Thing [Harry Lachman] b&w

1933

Mr. Skitch [James Cruze] b&w; 69m

1933

Coming-Out Party [John G. Blystone] b&w

1934

All Men Are Enemies [George Fitzmaurice] b&w

1934

Springtime for Henry [Frank Tuttle] b&w

1934

Marie Galante [Henry King] b&w

1934

Helldorado [James Cruze] b&w

1934

One More Spring [Henry King] b&w

1935

Our Little Girl [John S. Robertson] b&w; 65m; uncred ph add scenes: Henry Sharp

1935

Redheads on Parade [Norman Z. McLeod] b&w; cph: Barney McGill

1935

The Farmer Takes a Wife [Victor Fleming] b&w; uncred cph (?); ph: Ernest Palmer

1935

Curly Top [Irving Cummings] b&w

1935

Navy Wife/Beauty's Daughter [Allan Dwan] b&w; 69m; cph: Rudolph Maté

1935

The Littlest Rebel [David Butler] b&w

1935

Captain January [David Butler] b&w

1936

The Country Doctor [Henry King] b&w; cph: Daniel B. Clark (scenes with the Dionne Quintuplets in Canada)

1936

Poor Little Rich Girl [Irving Cummings] b&w

1936

15 Maiden Lane [Allan Dwan] b&w; 64m

1937

Carnival in Paris [Wilhelm Thiele] b&w; short/22m

1937

Between Two Women/Surrounded by Women [George B. Seitz] b&w; montages: John Hoffman

1937

Saratoga [Jack Conway] b&w; ph retakes; ph: Ray June; backgrounds ph: Clyde De Vinna

1937

Madame X [Sam Wood & (replaced Gustav Machatý)] b&w

1937

Navy Blue and Gold [Sam Wood] b&w

1937

Love Is a Headache [Richard Thorpe] b&w

1938

Lord Jeff/The Boy from Barnardo's [Sam Wood] b&w

1938

The Crowd Roars [Richard Thorpe] b&w; uncred cph: Oliver T. Marsh; montages: Slavko Vorkapich

1938

Stablemates [Sam Wood] b&w

1938

Young Dr. Kildare [Harold S. Bucquet] b&w; 1st film in 15-part 'Dr. Kildare/Dr. Gillespie'-series (MGM, 1938-47)

1938

A Christmas Carol [Edwin L. Marin] b&w; 69m; fill-in ph (while S. Wagner was ill); ph: Sidney Wagner

1938

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn [Richard Thorpe] b&w

1939

Sergeant Madden [Josef von Sternberg] b&w; montages: Peter Ballbusch

1939

The Hardys Ride High [George B. Seitz] b&w; uncred ph (last half of film); ph: Lester White; 6th film in 16-part 'Andy Hardy'-series (MGM, 1937-46 & 1958)

1939

Prophet Without Honor/Matthew Fontaine [Felix E. Feist] b&w; short/11m

1939

6000 Enemies [George B. Seitz] b&w; 61m

1939

Thunder Afloat [George B. Seitz] b&w

1939

Another Thin Man [W.S. Van Dyke] b&w; uncred ph (last half of film); ph William H. Daniels & Oliver T. Marsh

1939

Bad Little Angel [Wilhelm Thiele] b&w

1939

Let's Talk Turkey [Felix E. Feist] b&w; short/9m

1940

Dr. Kildare's Strange Case [Harold S. Bucquet] b&w; 4th film in 15-part 'Dr. Kildare/Dr. Gillespie'-series (MGM, 1938-47)

1940

We Who Are Young [Harold S. Bucquet] b&w; uncred ph (last half of film); ph: Karl Freund

1940

A Little Bit of Heaven [Andrew Marton] b&w

1940

Dr. Kildare's Crisis [Harold S. Bucquet] b&w; 6th film in 15-part 'Dr. Kildare/Dr. Gillespie'-series (MGM, 1938-47)

1941

Sullivan's Travels [Preston Sturges] b&w; process ph: Farciot Edouart

1941

Fly-By-Night/Secrets of G32 [Robert Siodmak] b&w

1941

This Gun for Hire [Frank Tuttle] b&w; spec pfx: Farciot Edouart, Gordon Jennings & William Pereira

1942

The Moon and Sixpence [Albert Lewin] b&w, sepia & c (final scenes)

1942

Star Spangled Rhythm [George Marshall] b&w; uncred ph musical number 'That Old Black Magic' (dir by A. Edward Sutherland); ph: Leo Tover & Theodor Sparkuhl

1942

Lucky Jordan [Frank Tuttle] b&w

[Middle/hat] with dir Preston Sturges [far right]

1942

The Miracle of Morgan's Creek [Preston Sturges] b&w

[Left] with Erich von Stroheim

"Five Graves to Cairo"

1943

Five Graves to Cairo [Billy Wilder] b&w

1943

The Hour Before the Dawn [Frank Tuttle] b&w

1943

Hail the Conquering Hero [Preston Sturges] b&w

1943

Going My Way [Leo McCarey] b&w; uncred ph (opening scenes); ph: Lionel Lindon

1943

Double Indemnity [Billy Wilder] b&w; process ph: Farciot Edouart

1944

Casanova Brown [Sam Wood] b&w

1944

The Unseen [Lewis Allen] b&w

1944

The Lost Weekend [Billy Wilder] b&w; spec pfx: Gordon Jennings; process ph: Farciot Edouart

1945

The Well-Groomed Bride [Sidney Lanfield] b&w; spec pfx: Gordon Jennings; process ph: Farciot Edouart

1945

Calcutta [John Farrow] b&w; process ph: Farciot Edouart

1945

The Imperfect Lady/Mrs. Loring's Secret/They Met at Midnight [Lewis Allen] b&w; process ph: Farciot Edouart

1946

Home, Sweet Homicide [Lloyd Bacon] b&w; spec pfx: Fred Sersen

1946

On Our Merry Way/A Miracle Can Happen [King Vidor (Charles Laughton seq [filmed July 1946, cut from film] & Burgess Meredith/Paulette Goddard seq [filmed August 1946]) & Leslie Fenton (Fred MacMurray seq [filmed September 1946] & Dorothy Lamour/Victor Moore seq [filmed October 1947]); (uncred James Stewart/Henry Fonda seq [filmed February 1947]) George Stevens & John Huston] b&w; ph Meredith/Goddard seq (?); other ph: Edward Cronjager (Laughton seq - cut from film), Gordon Avil (MacMurray seq), Joseph Biroc (Stewart/Fonda seq) & (uncred) Ernest Laszlo (Dorothy Lamour/Victor Moore seq)

1946

Saigon [Leslie Fenton] b&w; process ph: Farciot Edouart

1947

Wild Harvest [Tay Garnett] b&w; process ph: Farciot Edouart

1947

The Big Clock [John Farrow] b&w; uncred cph: Daniel L. Fapp; spec pfx: Gordon Jennings; process ph: Farciot Edouart

1947

Night Has a Thousand Eyes [John Farrow] b&w; process ph: Farciot Edouart

1947

Beyond Glory [John Farrow] b&w; sfx ph: Farciot Edouart

1948

The Great Gatsby [Elliott Nugent] b&w; process ph: Farciot Edouart

1948

Chicago Deadline [Lewis Allen] b&w; process ph: Farciot Edouart

1949

Captain Carey, U.S.A./After Midnight [Mitchell Leisen] b&w; process ph: Farciot Edouart

1949

Riding High [Frank Capra] b&w; ph Tanforan racetrack location; ph: George Barnes & Ernest Laszlo

[Hat] with Erich von Stroheim [left], William Holden, Gloria Swanson [sitting] & dir Billy Wilder [sitting]

"Sunset Blvd."

1949

Sunset Blvd./Sunset Boulevard [Billy Wilder] b&w; spec pfx: Gordon Jennings; process ph: Farciot Edouart; 'Of all the cinematographers Wilder worked with over his long career, he found Seitz to be the most 'realistic', a quality that for him was supreme. "He was ready for anything," Wilder said. "Sometimes the rushes were so dark that you couldn't see anything. He went to the limits of what could be done."' [Ed Sikov, 'On Sunset Boulevard: The Life and Times of Billy Wilder', Hyperion, 1998]; 'One reason 'Sunset Boulevard' is a great film is because of its pictorialism and the way those images move on the screen. Seitz used the camera as a precision instrument to engrave on the film complementary textures of waxy rot and polished foreboding. His camera rarely calls attention to itself though it's always on the go, looking around and peering into corners and tracking in closer, then tracking out.' [Sam Staggs, 'Close-Up on Sunset Boulevard', St. Martin's Press, 2002]

1949

Appointment with Danger [Lewis Allen] b&w; process ph: Farciot Edouart

1949

A Place in the Sun [George Stevens] b&w; uncred retakes ph (2 weeks); ph: William C. Mellor

1950

The Goldbergs/Molly [Walter Hart] b&w

1950

Dear Brat [William A. Seiter] b&w

1950

[Damon Runyon's] The Lemon Drop Kid [Sidney Lanfield & (uncred retakes) Frank Tashlin] b&w; uncred ph retakes (November-December); ph (July-August): Daniel L. Fapp

1950

When Worlds Collide [Rudolph Maté] c; cph: W. Howard Greene; process ph: Farciot Edouart; optical ph: Paul K. Lerpae

1951

Detective Story [William Wyler] b&w; uncred ph last 3 weeks; ph: Lee Garmes

1951

Thunder in the East [Charles Vidor] b&w; uncred ph first 2 weeks; replaced by ph Lee Garmes

1951

The Savage [George Marshall] c; spec pfx: Gordon Jennings

1951

The San Francisco Story [Robert Parrish] b&w

1951

Botany Bay [John Farrow] c; sfx: Gordon Jennings & W. Wallace Kelley; process ph: Farciot Edouart

1952

The Iron Mistress [Gordon Douglas] c

1952

Desert Legion [Joseph Pevney] c

1952

Invaders from Mars [William Cameron Menzies] c; spec pfx: Jack Cosgrove; optical efx: Irving Block & Jack Rabin

1953

Fort Algiers [Lesley Selander] b&w

1953

Saskatchewan/O'Rourke of the Royal Mounted [Raoul Walsh] c

1953

The Rocket Man [Oscar Rudolph] b&w

1954

Rogue Cop [Roy Rowland] b&w

1954

Many Rivers to Cross [Roy Rowland] cs/c

1954

The McConnell Story/Tiger in the Sky [Gordon Douglas] cs/c; 2uc: Ted McCord; filmed 1954-55

1955

Hell on Frisco Bay [Frank Tuttle] cs/c

1955

A Cry in the Night [Frank Tuttle] b&w

1955

Santiago/The Gun Runner [Gordon Douglas] c

1956

The Big Land/Stampeded [Gordon Douglas] c

1957

The Deep Six [Rudolph Maté] c

1957

Island of Lost Women [Frank Tuttle] b&w

1958

The Badlanders [Delmer Daves] cs/c

1958

The Man in the Net [Michael Curtiz] b&w

1959

Guns of the Timberland [Robert D. Webb] c