×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Robby Muller, Renowned Cinematographer for Wenders, Von Trier, Jarmusch, Dies at 78

Robby Muller, the Dutch director of photography of such striking ’80s and ’90s films as “Dancer in the Dark,” “Down by Law,” “Repo Man” and “Paris, Texas,” died July 4 in Amsterdam. He was 78 and according to Dutch publication Het Parool had been suffering from vascular dementia for several years.

Muller was known for his collaboration with filmmakers including Wim Wenders, Jim Jarmusch, Lars von Trier, Alex Cox and Barbet Schroeder, who created some of the most notable auteur films of the 1980s and 1990s.

As a European, he brought a memorable approach to portraying Los Angeles on film in William Friedkin’s “To Live and Die in L.A.,” Schroeder’s “Barfly” and Cox’s “Repo Man.”

The last feature-length film he shot was Michael Winterbottom’s 2002 “24 Hour Party People,” which vividly captured the Manchester music scene of the 1980s. That same year, he collaborated with director Steve McQueen on an art installation, “Carib’s Leap.”

Born in Curacao in the Dutch Antilles, he studied at the Netherlands Film Academy. Wenders’ 1970 “Summer in the City” was the first feature for both of them. He went on to serve as D.P. on Wenders’ “Alice in the Cities,” “The American Friend,” “Kings of the Road,” “Until the End of the World” and 1984’s “Paris, Texas,” which was hailed for its contrast of bleak desert scenes with garish views of life on the road.

Roger Ebert said of “Paris, Texas”: “The photography by Robby Muller contains the sense of a far horizon beyond every close shot.”

For Jarmusch, he shot “Down by Law” in what the Guardian called “moody and exquisite” black and white; he also shot the New York director’s “Dead Man,” “Mystery Train” and “Ghost Dog: Way of the Samurai.”

Jarmusch remembered him as an important influence, tweeting “Without him I don’t think I would know anything about filmmaking.”

Of von Trier’s “Breaking the Waves,” the Guardian said, “The superb cinematographer Robby Muller lit broad areas of space to facilitate freedom of movement on every location and set, and shot the action with handheld Super 35 mm cameras, lending rare visual dynamism to the CinemaScope screen.”

He is survived by his wife Andrea Muller and a son.

 

 

 

 

 

More Film

  • 'Shazam!' Review: Zachary Levi is Pure

    Film Review: 'Shazam!'

    In “Shazam!,” Zachary Levi brings off something so winning it’s irresistible. He plays a square-jawed, rippling-muscled man of might, with a cheesy Day-Glo lighting bolt affixed to his chest, who projects an insanely wholesome and old-fashioned idea of what a superhero can be. But he’s also playing a breathless teenage kid on the inside, and [...]

  • WGA Agents Contract Tug of War

    Showrunners, Screenwriters Back WGA in Agency Battle, Sides to Meet Again Tuesday

    More than 750 showrunners and screenwriters have backed the WGA’s battle against talent agencies taking packaging fees and other changes to the rules governing the business relationship between agents and writers. The letter of support issued Saturday is significant because of the immense clout showrunners and prominent screenwriters possess in Hollywood. Several showrunners had recently [...]

  • Doppelgänger Red (Lupita Nyong'o) and Adelaide

    Box Office: 'Us' on Track for Second-Highest Debut of 2019 With $67 Million

    Jordan Peele’s “Us” is on its way to scaring up one of the biggest debuts of 2019, with an estimated $67 million from 3,741 North American locations. Should estimates hold, “Us” will be able to claim several milestones: the highest debut for an original horror movie (the biggest launch for any horror pic goes to [...]

  • NF_D_JGN-D6-2160.cr2

    Film Review: 'The Dirt'

    A long time ago, the words sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll carried a hint of danger. The lifestyle did, too, but I’m talking about the phrase. It used to sound cool (back around the time the word “cool” sounded cool). But sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll has long since passed into the realm [...]

  • James Newton Howard Danny Elfman

    New Trend in Concert Halls: Original Music by Movie Composers — No Film Required

    Movie and TV composers are in greater demand than ever for, surprisingly, new music for the concert hall. For decades, concert commissions for film composers were few and far between. The increasing popularity of John Williams’ film music, and his visibility as conductor of the Boston Pops in the 1980s and ’90s, led to his [...]

  • Idris Elba Netflix 'Turn Up Charlie'

    Idris Elba in Talks to Join Andy Serkis in 'Mouse Guard'

    Idris Elba is in negotiations to join Andy Serkis and Thomas Brodie-Sangster in Fox’s fantasy-action movie “Mouse Guard” with “Maze Runner’s” Wes Ball directing. Fox is planning a live-action movie through performance capture technology employed in the “Planet of the Apes” films, in which Serkis starred as the ape leader Caesar. David Peterson created, wrote, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content