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RIP Andrew Lesnie

Andrew Lesnie, an Oscar winner for his work on the first Lord of the Rings title and cinematographer for eight of Peter Jackson’s films, died yesterday of a heart attack in Sydney.

Peter Jackson and Andrew Lesnie

Peter Jackson and Andrew Lesnie on set during The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

Lesnie’s work on 1995 Australian title Babe attracted Peter Jackson’s attention, leading to Lesnie joining the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Lesnie has shot all of Jackson’s titles since The Fellowship of the Ring, comprising the two Tolkien trilogies, King Kong and The Lovely Bones.

Early this morning Peter Jackson added a tribute to Lesnie on Facebook, saying, “Andrew was an irreplaceable part of my family and I am in total disbelief that I’ll never again hear his infectious laugh, nor benefit from his quiet wisdom.”

Lesnie also shot Rise of the Planet of the Apes and I Am Legend, titles that spent a considerable time in Wellington doing digital and post work. His most recent title was Russell Crowe’s The Water Diviner.

Crowe tweeted yesterday

Andrew Lesnie was 59.

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