Bob Richman


Bob Richman, Cinematographer

Classes taught:
Cinematography and Sound II

Bob Richman was born in Brooklyn New York and received a BA in psychology from SUNY Buffalo. He began his career in film working with the vérité pioneers Albert and David Maysles. He worked his way up from production assistant to assistant cameraman to cameraman. In 1991 he shared the director of photography credit with Albert Maysels on Christo's Umbrellas. The film documented Christo's installation of three thousand umbrellas north of Los Angeles and north of Tokyo. Mayseles covered the Japan story and Richman covered the California story. In 1993 Richman teamed up with Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky to shoot the HBO film Paradise Lost: the Robin Hood Hills Child Murders. Richman was nominated for a prime time Emmy. The film won an Emmy for best editing and also the prestigious Peabody award for journalism. Richman continued his collaboration as director of photography with Berlinger and Sinofsky on Paradise Lost 2, Meltallica: Some Kind of Monster, and the Sundance series Iconoclast. Richman began shooting real people and doc style commercials for such brands as McDonalds, Walmart, La Batts, Coors Lite, Gateway Computers and Blue Cross Blue Shield. He continued shooting documentaries, including The Producers: A Musical Romp with Mel Brooks, Good Rockin' Tonight, A Tickle in the Heart, Constantine's Sword and Killing Kasztner. When Nathanial Kahn approached Richman to shoot a film about his father, the famous architect Louis Kahn, he explained that he didn't want an American Masters type tribute but rather a film about his own journey, as an illegitimate son, in search of a father who died before he could really know him. My Architect, brilliantly directed by Kahn and exquisitely edited by Sabine Krayenbuhl, and was nominated for an academy award in 2004. In the spring of 2005 Richman flew down to Nashville Tennessee to film former Vice President Al Gore on his family farm with director Davis Guggenheim. That footage became an integral part of the film An Inconvenient Truth, one of the highest grossing documentaries of all time and won Davis an academy award for best feature length documentary. In 2007 director RJ Coutler contacted Richman to work on film about the notorious chief editor of Vogue Magazine, Anna Wintour. For almost eight months Richman followed Wintour and her staff at their offices in New York and at fashion shows and shoots in London, Paris and Rome. That film premiered at Sundance this year and Richman won the grand jury prize for best cinematography for documentary. The September Issue will have its theatrical release in August of this year. Ahead of Time, is Richman's first film as a director. Richman teamed up with first time producer and noted food photographer Zeva Oelbaum and reunited with editor Sabine Kraenbuhl, to craft an intimate portrait of the 97 year old journalist and photo-journalist Ruth Gruber.

Faculty News view all

Spring Festivals and Awards Roundup
April 13, 2017

Spring Festivals and Awards Roundup

Tis the season to celebrate documentary filmmaking and SocDocers are certainly joining the fun.  From Hot Docs in Canada to Monclair Film Festival in our own backyard and doc labs around the world, we’re thrilled to have such a strong show Read More
SocDoc at Tribeca Film Festival
March 21, 2017

SocDoc at Tribeca Film Festival

We are thrilled to find some of our alumni and faculty's new films at Tribeca Film Festival this year!

ACORN and the Firestorm written, directed and produced by faculty, Sam Pollard, along with Reuben Atlas.

The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson, directed by David France; Sarah Wainio (alumnus) joined the crew as associate producer.  

I Am Evidence, directed by Trish Adlesic, Geeta Gandbhir and with directing faculty Richard Hankin as supervising editor

Intent to Destroy, directed by Joe Berlinger, with cinematography by Bob Richman (camera faculty)

No Man's Land, directed by David Byars and edited and produced by alumnus David Osit, who also scored the film. The film's assistant editor is Raul Santos, another SocDoc alumnus, and consulting editor is faculty Richard Hankin. Alumnus Sarah Rachael Wainio and student James Stuart were transcribers for the film.

Soundtracks: Songs That Defined History, a new series for CNN is Executive Produced by Department Chair Maro Chermayeff and her company Show of Force.

Shadowman, filmed by cinematography faculty Tom Hurwitz and Bob Richman

Hilda, a short directed by Kiira Benzing and edited by Olga Lvoff (alumnus)

We'll be out in force for screenings and events - see you there!
(pictured: No Man's Land)

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Prospective Students: Attend SocDoc Process & Style Screenings
March 17, 2017

Prospective Students: Attend SocDoc Process & Style Screenings

If you're interested in joining SVA's MFA Social Documentary Film program, we encourage you to come by for a tour of the department, and to sit in on our weekly screening series that comprise our Process & Style class on Thursday evenings. Read More
Resist & Record: You're Invited
March 16, 2017

Resist & Record: You're Invited

Talk of resistance and protest has ignited in a new way in recent months, and in my role as an advocate and advisor for filmmakers, I have felt the need to create a platform for our student’s voices to be heard. Over coffee one morning, my fellow SocDoc faculty Deborah Dickson, Micah Fink and I decided we had to take this opportunity to activate our department. Not to require action - but to inspire it. Read More