Lou Barlia, Camera Operator on ‘Love Story,’ ‘Jaws’ and ‘Steel Magnolias,’ Dies at 92

Lou Barlia, who served as a camera operator on films from Love StoryDeath WishJaws and The Big Chill to Brighton Beach MemoirsSteel Magnolias and Frankie and Johnny, has died. He was 92.

Barlia died June 25 at his home in Las Vegas after a brief battle with mesothelioma, his family announced.

In his four-decade career, Barlia also looked through a viewfinder on Serpico (1973), The Prisoner of Second Avenue (1975), Next Stop, Greenwich Village (1976), Slap Shot (1977), An Unmarried Woman (1978), Eyes of Laura Mars (1978), Superman (1978), Gloria (1980), Mr. Mom (1983), The Accidental Tourist (1988), Hudson Hawk (1991) and Bruno (2000), among many other films.

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He received a lifetime achievement award from the Society of Operating Cameramen in 2000, the year he retired.

Born and raised in New York, Barlia began his love affair with photography in his early teens when his dad brought home a camera that he had found on train tracks in the city. 

He studied at the School of Industrial Art in New York and served as a U.S. Army combat cameraman during the Korean War, receiving the Bronze Star and other citations along the way.

Barlia found work starting in the 1950s in commercials, documentaries and TV shows before shooting his first big feature with Arthur Hiller‘s Love Story (1970).

Barlia never lost his interest in photography, cameras, cars, flying (licensed and instrument rated), fitness and technical gadgetry, his family noted.

Survivors include his sons, Kevin and David; their wives, Daniela and Karleen; and his grandchildren, Michele, Nicole and Bodie.

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