Ric Waite

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Ric Waite (July 10, 1933 – February 18, 2012) was an American cinematographer whose numerous film and television credits included Red Dawn, Footloose, 48 Hrs., and The Long Riders.[1] Waite received four Emmy nominations during his career.[1] He won his only Emmy for his work on the 1976 NBC television miniseries, Captains and the Kings.[1][2][3]


Early life and career

Waite was born in Sheboygan, Wisconsin.[1] He enlisted in the United States Air Force after graduation from high school and was a member of the Air Force's Photo Intelligence unit.[3] He moved to New York City, where he owned a studio as a professional photographer.[1] Waite specialized in advertising and fashion photography. His clients included Jaguar Cars, Glamour, Vogue, Hanes, DuPont, and GQ magazine.[1][3]


Waite relocated from the East Coast to Los Angeles in 1970.[1] His earliest work as a cinematographer was in television, including the 1970s television series Emergency!, City of Angels, and Police Story.[3] He also shot many television films including Tail Gunner Joe in 1977, in which he earned an Emmy nomination; The Life and Assassination of the Kingfish, released in 1977, for which he received another Emmy nomination; Dead of Night and Amateur Night at the Dixie Bar and Grill, which aired in 1979.[3] Waite earned his fourth, and final, Emmy nomination in 1996 for the television movie, Andersonville, which aired on TNT.[3]


Waite's feature film debut as a cinematographer was The Long Riders, a 1980 Western film directed by Walter Hill.[3] His numerous film credits as director of photography included Footloose by Herbert Ross; Red Dawn by John Milius; Brewster's Millions, a 1985 film also by Hill; Summer Rental by director Carl Reiner; Volunteers by Nicholas Meyer; Cobra by George P. Cosmatos; and Adventures in Babysitting by Chris Columbus.[3]

Later life

Waite moved to the Denver metropolitan area in 2002.[3] He taught lighting and cinematography within the film studies department at the University of Colorado at Boulder.[1][3]

Most recently, Waite shot Best Ribs in Town and Assassins' Code.[3] He had signed on as the cinematographer for the upcoming film, Legacy.[3]

Waite died from a heart attack at his home in Los Angeles on February 18, 2012, at the age of 78.[2] He was survived by his wife of 48 years, Judy, and two children, Richard and Burgandy.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Giardina, Carolyn (2012-02-21). "Cinematographer Ric Waite Dies at 78". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2012-02-29. 
  2. ^ a b "Passings: Michael Davis, Dick Anthony Williams, Ric Waite". Los Angeles Times. 2012-02-21. Retrieved 2012-02-29. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Cinematographer Ric Waite dies, Shot 'Footloose,' '48 Hrs.,' won Emmy". Variety. 2012-02-21. Retrieved 2012-02-29. 

External links

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