Sad news reached the PAN office overnight. Frank Griffin the co founder of Los Angeles based celebrity photo agency Bauer-Griffin has died.
We have no other details at this stage but we are in touch with the agency and hope to get a formal announcement soon.
Englishman Frank moved to LA at the end of the 1980’s after a successful early career throughout Europe as a music photographer shooting all the great bands and singers of the 70’s and 80’s. He and business partner Randy Bauer founded celebrity and events photo agency Bauer-Griffin in 1997.
Industry reaction – Frank remembered:
“Heartbroken, totally heartbroken. I was Picture Editor of Hello ! and Frank and I would speak about ten times a day, everyday . He was usually the last person I spoke to at night and the first person in the morning due to the London/LA time difference. When I visited LA frequently for work Frank would let me drive his MGB. An English girl in an English car cruising on Sunset . Fond fond memories.” Sue Neal
“Frank was a rival, but a friendly rival, and it was always fun going up against the Bauer-Griffin team, “Frank enjoyed the chase of the big story, and in the old days the chase was usually astride his motorbike weaving in and out of the traffic on the boulevards of Los Angeles.”
“On the long stake-outs and doorsteps, Frank would entertain the younger photographers with wild stories from his checkered past. I remember one snapper doubting the veracity of one his European escapades, just before Frank broke into fluent German to speak to his Swiss business partner. There was a lot more to Frank than he often let on.”
“He took papp’ing very seriously. I recall in his early days in Hollywood on how fast he could hoist his 500mm from dangling by his side to shooting position – like an old-fashioned gunslinger drawing a pistol. He was quick with a hefty lens, and it was amazing to see. “Later he showed me his stake-out vehicle, a Mercedes SUV with blacked-out windows. He held a remote in his hand which controlled the windows, so he could sit inconspicuously for hours, but with the push of a button quickly drop them to shoot some unsuspecting celebrity.”
“More recently, he had become something of a rent-a-quote for the paparazzi industry. It seemed no story on the scurrilous paparazzi was complete without a comment from the brash talking British expat. And Frank rarely disappointed. Frank by name, frank by nature. He told it as it was. No sugar coating.”
Kevin Smith, founder of Splash News and now The Mega Agency.
“Frank was the paparazzi guru who I had the pleasure of talking to for several hours many many years ago in his LA office about all aspects of the business and I learnt a lot. One thing stood out to me was his expertise and passion with pictures. So Sad to hear the news of Franks passing.”
David Taylor Backgrid.
Frank was a big man with a big heart and I have great memories of the years we worked in partnership together. Frank is a true legend, he will be missed.
Trevor Adams | Matrix Media Ltd
It was a fantastic and unforgettable few years working for Frank at Bauer-Griffin travelling the world working on the biggest celebrity exclusives. “Make sure you shoot wide so that we can get a double-page spread!” was one of his favourite phrases. He is gone too soon and will be greatly missed. The industry will never see the likes of him again and he will never be forgotten.
I still have the dvd’s of The Hollywood Hunt Club, a great pap documentary series he did for E! many years ago during the heyday of the pap activity in LA and where Bauer-Griffin led the field. I spoke with him less than 2 months ago and though I noticed that he was very hoarse, he didn’t mention that he was suffering from any important health issue. Sad and surprised to learn the news.
My condolences to his son and family. Rest in peace.
Pablo Grosby Director/ The Grosby Group