Cinema's "Prince of Darkness"
Subscriber content preview. or Sign In
He did some of his best work in the dark: the opening scene of The Godfather, with Don Corleone shrouded in murk as he decides a man’s fate; Deep Throat in All the President’s Men emerging from the shadows to spill a government’s secrets; Woody Allen and Diane Keaton moving from starlight to moonless night in Manhattan. All shone with the movie artistry of Gordon Willis, the director of photography who created so much dim, brooding imagery that his fellow DP Conrad Hall dubbed him the Prince of Darkness. After a career upending the old edicts of film lighting, Willis died on May 18 of metastatic cancer at his home in Falmouth, Mass.