John W. Boyle

John W. Boyle (September 1, 1891 – September 28, 1959), was an American cinematographer whose career spanned from the silent era through the 1950s. Over his career he would photograph more than 150 films, including features, shorts and documentaries. He would also work on several British films over the course of his career.

John W. Boyle
John W. Boyle in 1931
Born(1891-09-01)September 1, 1891
Memphis, Tennessee United States
DiedSeptember 28, 1959(1959-09-28) (aged 68)
Hollywood, California, United States
Years active1915–57
Spouse(s)Lillian P. Boyle

Life and careerEdit

John W. Boyle was born in Memphis, Tennessee, on September 1, 1891. He entered the film industry in 1915, when he shot three films, Greater Love Hath No Man, Her Great Match and My Madonna. In 1917 he photographed the silent classic, Cleopatra, starring Theda Bara. The film is on the American Film Institute's "Ten Most Wanted" list of lost American films.[1] J. Gordon Edwards helmed the film, and the two would work together on 22 other films over the following 12 years,[2] including such classics as Salomé and When a Woman Sins, both again starring Bara, and The Queen of Sheba, starring Betty Blythe.[3][4] [5]

During his long career, Boyle filmed over 70 feature-length motion pictures in the United States and Great Britain. He filmed several documentaries and also produced one of them, Sweden, Land of the Vikings.[6] Between 1928 and 1933 Boyle worked on short films, many of them produced by Mack Sennett.[7] Boyle was president of the American Society of Cinematographers (ASC) from 1928 to 1929.[8]

Boyle died on September 28, 1959, in Hollywood, California.[9]


Boyle's filmography is listed in the databases of the American Film Institute and British Film Institute.[2][10][11]


  1. ^ "Cleopatra". American Film Institute. Retrieved December 31, 2014.
  2. ^ a b "John W. Boyle". American Film Institute. Retrieved December 31, 2014.
  3. ^ "Salome". American Film Institute. Retrieved December 31, 2014.
  4. ^ "When a Woman Sins". American Film Institute. Retrieved December 31, 2014.
  5. ^ "The Queen of Sheba". American Film Institute. Retrieved December 31, 2014.
  6. ^ "Sweden, Land of the Vikings". American Film Institute. Retrieved December 31, 2014.
  7. ^ "John W. Boyle Film Stills and Photograph Collection". Online Archive of California. Retrieved December 31, 2014.
  8. ^ "ASC Past Presidents". American Society of Cinematographers. Retrieved December 31, 2014.
  9. ^ "John W. Boyle, Sr". Find a Grave. Retrieved December 31, 2014.
  10. ^ "John Boyle". American Film Institute. Retrieved September 19, 2018.
  11. ^ "John W. Boyle". British Film Institute. Archived from the original on May 30, 2017. Retrieved December 31, 2014.

External linksEdit