George Barnes (cinematographer)

George S. Barnes, A.S.C. (October 16, 1892 May 30, 1953) was an American cinematographer active from the era of silent films to the early 1950s.

George S. Barnes

George Barnes at top right behind Cecil B. DeMille on set of Samson and Delilah (1949)
Born(1892-10-16)October 16, 1892
DiedMay 30, 1953(1953-05-30) (aged 60)
Years active1918–1953
Joan Blondell
(m. 1933; div. 1936)

Melba Marshal Kruger
(m. 19??)


Over the course of his career, Barnes was nominated for an Academy Award eight times, including for his work on The Devil Dancer (1927) with Gilda Gray and Clive Brook. However, he won once, for his work on the Alfred Hitchcock film Rebecca (1940). "Barnes’ photographic interpretation of Rebecca is the sort of thing to which his fellow cinematographers may point, as indeed they did in bestowing upon it the industry's premiere Award, as a complete example of what truly great camerawork can mean to a production".

He was married to Joan Blondell from 1933 to 1936 and filmed five of Blondell's Warner Bros. pictures. In fact, they met on The Greeks Had a Word for Them set in which she had the leading role. Their relationship is often said to have been intense. In an interview, Blondell explained that Barnes cured her from lying. Barnes was the biological father of Blondell's son, the television executive Norman Powell, who was later adopted by Blondell's second husband. Barnes also had two daughters from his marriage to Melba Marshal Kruger: Barbara Ann Barnes (born April 16, 1940) and Georgene S. Barnes (born May 7, 1942). He was also married to Elizabeth Wood and had a son named George Carlton Barnes.

He died at the age of 60 in Los Angeles, California, after having worked on at least 142 films. He is interred at Hollywood Forever Cemetery in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California.[1]


Awards and nominations

At the 13th Awards Banquet of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Barnes was proclaimed the winner of the 1940 Academy Award for the year's best black-and-white cinematography in recognition of his skill in filming Rebecca.


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