Néstor Almendros Cuyás A.S.C. (30 October 1930 – 4 March 1992) was an Oscar-winning Spanishcinematographer. One of the highest appraised contemporary cinematographers, "Almendros was an artist of deep integrity, who believed the most beautiful light was natural light...he will always be remembered as a cinematographer of absolute truth...a true master of light"
After the 1959 Cuban Revolution, he returned and made several documentaries for the Castro regime. But after two of his shorts (Gente en la playa and La tumba francesa) were banned, he moved to Paris. There he became the favorite collaborator of Éric Rohmer and François Truffaut.
Almendros began his Hollywood career with Days of Heaven (1978), written and directed by Terrence Malick, who admired Almendros' work on The Wild Child (1970) so much that he wanted him to shoot Days of Heaven. Almendros was impressed by Malick's knowledge of photography and his willingness to use little studio lighting. The film's cinematography was modeled after silent films, which often used natural light. In 1979, Almendros won the Academy Award for Best Cinematography for Days of Heaven.
Human Rights Watch International has named an award after him by establishing the Nestor Almendros Award for Courage in Filmmaking and it is given every year at the Human Rights Watch International Film Festival.