Dennis Hopper

In some sad news Dennis Hopper passed away this morning after a long fight with cancer. I was lucky enough to get to shoot him twice. The first time was at Sundance in 2008. His PR rep said he would give us 5 mins for the shoot, which he did but was then happy to hang out for over half and hour and discuss photography and art. We was quite an accomplished photographer himself and has an incredible art collection. He was very personable and friendly and seemed to be in good health and had 2 films at the festival. The next year I photographed him again at the Cannes film festival where he was given a lifetime achievement award by Maybach. He was very humble in his acceptance speech and moved to tears when talking about all the people who helped him through his long and turbulent career. I got to show him the picture above that I had shot in Sundance the year before. I rarely get to show my finished pictures to the subjects themselves and it was nice to see him react to seeing it and say he liked it. That day in Cannes was May 17th and happened to be his birthday as well as mine. Dennis was having a party that night on a 200ft mega yacht moored out in the harbor with Mick Jagger, Bono, Brad & Angelina etc. I had a much smaller celebration. He was a true icon of film in a rare career arc that started in the ’50s with James Dean in “Rebel Without a Cause” and went through “Easy Rider”, “Apocalypse Now”, “Blue Velvet” “Hoosiers”, “Speed” and ended with the TV series “Crash”. I’m glad to have crossed paths with him.

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