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Oscar-Winning Cinematographer Sven Nykvist


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Oscar-Winning Cinematographer Sven Nykvist


Sven Nykvist

STOCKHOLM, Sweden -- Oscar-winning filmmaker Sven Nykvist, who was legendary director Ingmar Bergman's cinematographer of choice, died Wednesday, September 20 after a long illness, his son said. He was 83. Nykvist died at a nursing home where he was being treated for aphasia, a form of dementia, said his son, Carl-Gustaf Nykvist.

Nykvist won Academy Awards for best cinematography for the Bergman films "Cries and Whispers" in 1973 and "Fanny and Alexander" in 1982. Nykvist's sense of lighting and camera work made him a favorite of Bergman's after their first collaboration on the 1954 movie "Sawdust and Tinsel," which began a partnership that lasted nearly 30 years.

"Together with Ingmar, he created movie history with those lighting arrangements," said Carl-Gustaf Nykvist, who directed the 2000 documentary "Light Keeps Me Company" about his father. "He was called 'the master of light' because of the moods and atmospheres he could create with light. It was a near impossibility to create the moods he created."


Sven Nykvist

Nykvist also worked on fellow Swede Lasse Hallstrom's "What's Eating Gilbert Grape" and did several movies with Bergman fan Woody Allen like 1989's "Crimes and Misdemeanors." Other films included 1993's "Sleepless in Seattle" and 1992's "Chaplin." His last film was 1999's "Curtain Call."

"Sven Nykvist was somewhat of a father figure for me," Hallstrom told Swedish news agency TT. "He taught me very much during the movies we made together. He was the one who got Americans and the world to realize that lighting could be simple and realistic."

Nykvist's wife, Ulrika, died in 1982. In addition to his son, he is survived by his daughter-in-law, Helena Berlin and grandchildren Sonia Sondell and Marilde Nykvist. Funeral arrangements were not immediately announced.

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