Arthur C. Miller

Active - 1916 - 1951  |   Born - Jul 8, 1895   |   Died - Jul 13, 1970   |   Genres - Drama, Comedy, Romance

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Biography by AllMovie

American cinematographer Arthur C. Miller signed on at age 13 as assistant to cameraman Fred J. Balshofer; nearly sixty years later, Miller and Balshofer would recall their formative professional years in the 1967 book Two Reels and a Crank. When Balshofer moved from Brooklyn to New Jersey's Edison studios, Miller went along, where he served as an assistant to director Edwin S. Porter (of Great Train Robbery fame). On the strength of his work with Porter, the 18-year-old Miller was engaged by Pathe's Louis Gasnier to photograph the landmark serial The Perils of Pauline (1914). From here, Miller went on to collaborate with director George Fitzmaurice in 1916. After nine years as director of photography for several major Hollywood talents, Miller signed on with Cecil B. DeMille, remaining with the famed producer/director until 1929. In 1932, art director William Cameron Menzies, whom Miller had helped out early in Menzies' career, returned the favor by securing Miller a long contract with Fox Studios (later 20th Century-Fox). While at Fox, Miller won Academy Awards for his black-and-white photography of How Green was My Valley (1941), and Anna and the King of Siam (1946), and for his Technicolor work on The Song of Bernadette (1943). Miller was a favorite of director John Ford; in later years Miller noted that Ford was supremely able to describe what sort of shot or effect he wanted without ever peering through a viewfinder. Retiring from active film work in 1951, Miller became president of the American Society of Cinematographers; in the '60s, he set up an extensive exhibit of vintage camera equipment on behalf of the ASC. Arthur C. Miller died in 1970, just after assembling an ASC documentary titled The Moving Picture Camera.

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