Willis emphasizes that when making creative choices, “why” is more important than “how.” (1:23)
Gordon Willis, ASC, had a seismic influence on his chosen art form. One of a handful of cinematographers whose work came to define the American New Wave of the 1970s, Willis became renowned for his inventive visuals in The Godfather, Klute, Manhattan, The Parallax View, All the President’s Men and Annie Hall, among other titles. He earned two Academy Award nominations, for Zelig and The Godfather Part III, and was awarded an honorary Oscar in 2009. The ASC honored him with its Lifetime Achievement Award in 1995. Here are excerpts from a 2004 interview conducted by Richard Crudo, ASC, in Willis’ home.