End Credits #38: Cinema's 2015 Lost Treasures Haskell Wexler, Gabriele Ferzetti
These are some of Cinema's sad departures of 2015 taken from my personal notes soon after the events took place:
The multiple Award winning Haskell Wexler (February 6, 1922 - December 27, 2015) has sorrowfully died at age 93. He was at the top of his craft having photographed such notable films as The Best Man, The Loved One, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, In the Heat of the Night, the notable Medium Cool (which he also directed), One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Bound for Glory, Matewan and many others. He also directed and/or shot some documentaries that promoted his progressive political views. His loss will be felt for a long time to come.
Italian actor Gabriele Ferzetti has sadly passed away at age 90. He was one of Italy's most recognizable international stars. After some theatrical training with the Rome Academy of Dramatic Art and the National Theatre, he made his motion picture debut in Via delle cinque lune (1942). His breakthrough role occurred opposite Gina Lollobrigida in The Wayward Wife (1953) establishing him as a major star. He went on to play the leading characters in both Puccini (1953) and Sins of Casanova (1955) amongst others. After giving a most impressive performance as a struggling artist in Michelangelo Antonioni's Le amiche (1955), Ferzetti starred as the amorous Sandro in the same director's L'Avventura (1960): one of Italy's finest motion pictures, indeed one of the world's greatest cinematic accomplishments. His distinctively handsome, impeccably groomed appearance and thoughtful manner gave many of his later on screen characters a commanding authoritarian presence, always leaving strong and lasting impressions. Western audiences will remember him most fondly for 2 prominent roles: As railroad baron Morton in Sergio Leone's Once Upon a Time in the West (1968) and syndicate boss Draco in the James Bond thriller On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969, pictured). He will be sorely missed. Gabriele Ferzetti (March 17, 1925 - December 2, 2015) R.I.P.