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Press Association
Wednesday 2 December 1998

Freddie Young

Oscar-Winning Cinematographer Dies

By MARA D. BELLABY Associated Press Writer LONDON (AP) -- Freddie Young, a triple Oscar winner for his cinematography on the legendary films "Lawrence of Arabia," "Doctor Zhivago" and "Ryan's Daughter," has died. He was 96.

He died Tuesday in London, according to obituaries in British newspapers. No cause of death was given.

Young was responsible for what some consider the greatest shot in cinema-the three-minute segment of David Lean's "Lawrence of Arabia" in which Peter O'Toole and his guide watch a figure slowly emerge from the desert heat.

Born in London on Oct. 9, 1902, Young was the seventh of eight children. He left school at 14 and worked briefly at a munitions factory before becoming an apprentice in the film industry.

His first film credit as assistant cameraman appeared in 1922 on "Rob Roy," and by 1934 he had notched 25 credits on mostly forgettable films, The Guardian reported.

In 1937, Young worked on his first big-budget film, the historical drama "Victoria the Great" by director Herbert Wilcox. The film's final reel ran in color, launching Young's career as a color cinematographer. That led to more films and, finally, his breakthrough in Michael Powell's "49th Parallel" in 1941, starring Eric Portman and Laurence Olivier.

Young continued working nonstop for more than a quarter century, producing some of his best work when he neared- and passed-retirement age.

He received his first Oscar nomination for work on "Ivanhoe" in 1950, directed by Richard Thorpe. He followed that with work on John Ford's "Mogambo" in 1953 and Gene Kelly's "Invitation to the Dance" in 1956.

In 1962, he filmed "Lawrence of Arabia," winning his first Oscar at the age of 60. That was followed by another David Lean film and another Oscar for his work on "Doctor Zhivago" in 1965.

His later films-when he was well into his 70s-included Oscar-winning work on Lean's "Ryan's Daughter" which took a grueling 15 months to complete in 1970. He also won an Emmy for a television version of "Macbeth."

In 1972, he was named a Fellow of the British Association for Film and Television Arts-only the second person to receive that honor after Alfred Hitchcock.

While in his 80s, Young turned his hand to directing, making a small film about an elderly man's devotion to his cricket field. The Times said Young recently had been working on his memoirs, and a book, "Seventy Light Years: A Life in Movies" is scheduled for publication in February.

Young is survived by his second wife, Joan, and a son, David.

His first wife, Marjorie, died in 1963.

Funeral arrangements were not available.

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