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Oliver Wood (cinematographer)

Oliver Wood (born April 2, 1950) is an English cinematographer,[1][2] known for his work on blockbuster action and comedy films[3] such as Die Hard 2, Face/Off, Freaky Friday, Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, and the Bourne franchise.[4] He has collaborated with directors like Paul Greengrass, John Woo, Renny Harlin, Ron Underwood, and Adam McKay, and was nominated for a BAFTA Award for Best Cinematography for The Bourne Ultimatum.[5]

Oliver Wood
Born (1950-04-02) April 2, 1950 (age 69)
Years active1967–Present
Known forMiami Vice
The Bourne Trilogy
AwardsBAFTA Award for Best Cinematography
2007 The Bourne Ultimatum

Life and careerEdit

Wood was born in London, England on April 2, 1950. At the age of 19, he moved to New York City. His first break came for director Leonard Kastle on cult crime film The Honeymoon Killers (1969) where he used available light to give the dark comedy a newsreel look.[6] He shot numerous B-movies and independent films throughout the late 1970s and 1980s, frequently collaborating with cinematographers Joseph Mangine and Fred Murphy.[7] He also worked as a camera operator on higher-profile projects including Body Rock (1984) and To Live and Die in L.A. (1985), both of which where shot by Robby Müller. He also became a prolific music video and commercial cinematographer, working for directors like Bob Giraldi and Rupert Wainwright.

His big break came when he was director of photography for 53 episodes of stylish crime drama Miami Vice, serving as the series primary DP between 1987 and 1989. His work on the series caught the attention of producers, enabling him to work on big-budget Hollywood films including Die Hard 2 (1990), Face/Off (1997), U-571 (2000) Fantastic Four (2005), and Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (2013).[8] He was the original director of photography on the swashbuckling action film Cutthroat Island, but suffered an on-set injury and was replaced by Peter Levy.[9][10][11] He also shot the Bourne Trilogy, where he worked with director Paul Greengrass to produce a spontaneous, naturalistic effect, often using multiple cameras, frequently handheld, citing films such as The Battle of Algiers as an influence.[12][13] He was nominated for a BAFTA for The Bourne Ultimatum (2007).[14]

In 2016, Wood shot the remake of Ben-Hur,[15] directed by Timur Bekmambetov, utilizing GoPro cameras to film the movie's actions sequences.[16]


  Denotes films that have not yet been released
Year Title Director Notes
1967 Popdown Fred Marshall Short film
1969 The White Slave Rene Daalder Co-cinematographer with Jan De Bont
1970 The Honeymoon Killers Leonard Kastle
1977 Danny Gene Feldman
1978 Feedback Bill Doukas
1980 Don't Go in the House Joseph Ellison
1982 Maya Ágúst Ágústsson
Q - The Winged Serpent Larry Cohen Co-cinematographer with Fred Murphy[17]
1983 The Returning Josh Bender
The Sex O'Clock News Romano Vanderbes
My Hometown Bob Giraldi Short film
1984 In Our Words Robert Richter
Stanley Warnow
Alphabet City Amos Poe
1986 Joey Joseph Ellison
Quiet Cool Clay Borris Co-cinematographer with Jacques Haitkin
1987-89 Miami Vice Various Television series;
53 episodes
1990 Die Hard 2 Renny Harlin
The Adventures of Ford Fairlane
1991 Mystery Date Jonathan Wacks
Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey Peter Hewitt
1993 For Love or Money Barry Sonnenfeld
Rudy David Anspaugh
Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit Bill Duke
1994 Terminal Velocity Deran Sarafian
1995 Mr. Holland's Opus Stephen Herek
1996 Celtic Pride Tom DeCerchio
2 Days in the Valley John Herzfeld
1997 Face/Off John Woo
Switchback Jeb Stuart
1998 Mighty Joe Young Ron Underwood Co-cinematographer with Donald Peterman
2000 U-571 Jonathan Mostow
2002 The Adventures of Pluto Nash Ron Underwood
I Spy Betty Thomas
The Bourne Identity Doug Liman
2003 National Security Dennis Dugan
Freaky Friday Mark Waters
2004 Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed Raja Gosnell
The Bourne Supremacy Paul Greengrass
2005 Fantastic Four Tim Story
2006 Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby Adam McKay
2007 The Bourne Ultimatum Paul Greengrass Nominated - BAFTA Award for Best Cinematography
2008 Step Brothers Adam McKay
2009 Surrogates Jonathan Mostow
2010 The Other Guys Adam McKay
2012 Safe House Daniel Espinosa
2013 2 Guns Baltasar Kormákur
Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues Adam McKay
2015 Child 44 Daniel Espinosa
2016 Grimsby Louis Leterrier
Ben-Hur Timur Bekmambetov
Jack Reacher: Never Go Back Edward Zwick
2018 The Equalizer 2 Antoine Fuqua
Holmes & Watson Etan Cohen
2020 Morbius Daniel Espinosa Post-production

Additional photography creditsEdit

Year Title Dir. DoP. Notes
1984 Body Rock Marcelo Epstein Robby Müller Camera operator
1985 To Live and Die in L.A. William Friedkin
Seven Minutes in Heaven Linda Ferferman Steven Fierberg Director of Photography: 2nd Unit
Rappin' Joel Silberg David Gurfinkel
1986 Hoosiers David Anspaugh Fred Murphy
Neon Maniacs Joseph Mangine Joseph Mangine Director of Additional Photography[18]
2007 Breach Billy Ray Tak Fujimoto
2010 The Town Ben Affleck Robert Elswit
Little Fockers Paul Weitz Remi Adefarasin
2011 Battle: Los Angeles Jonathan Liebesman Lukas Ettlin
2012 Wrath of the Titans Ben Davis


  1. ^ "OLIVER WOOD". Retrieved 2017-08-04.
  2. ^ Staff, (2015-02-06). "Oliver Wood | Biography and Filmography". Retrieved 2017-08-05.
  3. ^ Staff, (2015-02-06). "Oliver Wood | Biography and Filmography". Retrieved 2017-08-04.
  4. ^ "". Retrieved 2017-11-12. External link in |title= (help)
  5. ^ "Film Awards Winners in 2008". Retrieved 2017-08-04.
  6. ^ Gary Giddins, The Honeymoon Killers, The Criterion Collection
  7. ^ "OLIVER WOOD". Retrieved 2017-11-12.
  8. ^
  9. ^ Bernard, Paul (2013-03-26). Adventures in Movies: A Chronicle of 25 Years in Movies from Roger Rabbit to Harry Potter. BookBaby. ISBN 9781626754980.
  10. ^ "Class of 1995: 'Cutthroat Island' | THE FILM YAP". THE FILM YAP. 2015-11-30. Retrieved 2017-11-12.
  11. ^ Sterngold, James (1996-03-31). "Debacle on the High Seas". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2017-11-12.
  12. ^ Jon Silberg, "The Bourne Ultimatum", American Cinematographer magazine, September 2007
  13. ^ David Heuring, "Homeward Bound", ICG Magazine, August 2007
  14. ^ 2008 Winners, BAFTA, accessed January 21, 2016
  15. ^ "OLIVER WOOD". Retrieved 2017-08-04.
  16. ^ Hart, Hugh (August 18, 2016). "YouTube-Inspired Director Used GoPro Cameras to Capture Ben-Hur Chariot Action". Where to Watch.
  17. ^ "OLIVER WOOD". Retrieved 2017-11-12.
  18. ^ "OLIVER WOOD". Retrieved 2017-11-12.

External linksEdit