×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Cinematographer Ric Waite dies

Shot 'Footloose,' '48 Hrs.,' won Emmy

Ric Waite, cinematographer of films including “Footloose,” “48 Hrs.,” “Red Dawn” and “The Long Riders,” died Saturday, Feb. 18, in Los Angeles of natural causes. He was 78.

For his work in television, Waite earned four Emmy nominations, including a win in 1976 for the NBC miniseries “Captains and the Kings.”

Waite began as a still photographer. At the New York City photography studio he owned, he did fashion and advertising work for magazines including GQ, Vogue, Glamour, Seventeen and Playboy and advertisers such as Jaguar and DuPont.

He moved to Los Angeles in 1970 and began work as a cinematographer. Waite initially worked in television, lensing episodes of series including “Emergency!,” “Police Story” and “City of Angels” as well as numerous telepics, including “Tail Gunner Joe” (for which he received an Emmy nom), “The Life and Assassination of the Kingfish” (another Emmy nom), “Dead of Night” and “Amateur Night at the Dixie Bar and Grill.”

He scored his final Emmy nom for a much later effort, the 1996 TNT telepic “Andersonville.”

Waite successfully transitioned to bigscreen work with the critically lauded Walter Hill Western “The Long Riders” in 1979. Among the features he shot were Hill’s “Brewster’s Millions,” starring Richard Pryor and John Candy; Carl Reiner’s “Summer Rental,” with Candy; Nicholas Meyer’s “Volunteers,” starring Tom Hanks and Candy; “Cobra,” starring Sylvester Stallone; Chris Columbus’ “Adventures in Babysitting”; and a number of films starring Steven Seagal.

Richard Waite was born in Sheboygan, Wisc. After high school he joined the Air Force and flew with the Photo Intelligence group.

Waite was a member of the American Society of Cinematographers.

In 2002 he moved to the Denver area, where he taught cinematography and lighting at the Colorado U. Film School.

In recent years Waite shot the films “Best Ribs in Town” and “Assassins’ Code,” and he was set as director of photography on the film “Legacy,” which is in pre-production.

Waite is survived by his wife of 48 years, Judy; a son; and a daughter.

Popular on Variety

More Scene

  • DOLEMITE IS MY NAME!, 2019, DOL_Unit_06284.RAF

    'Dolemite Is My Name' Writer Larry Karaszewski Recalls 10-Year Journey to Make Rudy Ray Moore Biopic

    “Harriet” writer-director Kasi Lemmons was in a reflective mood at Tuesday night’s “Behind the Scene” event at the Formosa Cafe in West Hollywood, sponsored by the Writers Guild of America West. The biopic, starring Cynthia Erivo as slave-turned-abolitionist Harriet Tubman, has been receiving buzz since its premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival. It’s Lemmons’ [...]

  • Taika Waititi and Roman Griffin Davis

    Holocaust Experts Debate 'Jojo Rabbit' at Museum of Tolerance Screening

    With its comedic, cartoonish portrayal of Nazis, Taika Waititi’s satirical Hitler youth tale “Jojo Rabbit” has polarized critics and audiences alike. And that division continued to be stirred at Tuesday night’s screening of the film at the Museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles, where Liebe Geft, director of the museum, moderated a heated panel discussion [...]

  • Laura Dern MoMA

    Gwendoline Christie, Adam Driver Honor Laura Dern at MoMA Film Benefit

    Laura Dern is certainly no stranger to film sets. “Bruce Dern and Diane Ladd birthed me and bred me on cinema,” she said on Tuesday night in New York City, as she accepted honors at the Museum of Modern Art’s annual Film Benefit, presented by Chanel. “I was conceived on a Roger Corman movie called [...]

  • Jon Huerta

    'This Is Us' Star Jon Huertas Builds Community With Venice's Clutch Restaurant

    “This Is Us” star Jon Huertas, who’s being honored at the Napa Valley Film Festival with Variety Vivant’s Spice Award Nov. 13, has always known he wanted a career in Hollywood. But he’s something of an accidental restaurateur. No, he didn’t exactly stumble into co-owning Clutch, one of the hottest upscale casual restaurants in Venice, [...]

  • John Legend LVE Wine

    Celebrities Take Hands-On Approach to Making Fine Wines

    Care to sip champagne backed by Jay Z or 50 Cent? Or mellow out with a fine Chianti from Sting and Trudie Styler? Behind every wine label is an incredibly expensive team effort of surprising proportions. Wine lovers may consider making their own as the ultimate dream; however, few can afford the buy-in. Vineyards are [...]

  • St. Clair Brown, Mad Fritz lead

    Craft Beer Thrives in the Heart of Napa Wine Country

    Napa Valley has long been devoted to the products of the grape, but the region actually played a pivotal role in getting the craft beer revolution off the ground. New Albion Brewing launched the microbrewery trend in adjacent Sonoma County in 1976, inspiring a wave of delicious and potent alternatives to pale industrial beer. There’s [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content