Born on April 23, 1911. father, Elwin Neame, was a film director and his mother, Ivy Close, was a film star. During the 1920s, he started working at Elstree Studios. His first jobs was assistant cameraman for Alfred Hitchcock on Blackmail (1929). .He became a cinematographer during the 1930s. In 1942, he and sound designer C.C. Stevens received a special effect Oscar nomination for One of Our Aircraft Is Missing (1942), a film by the Michael Powell/Emeric Pressburger team. In 1944, after working together on In Which We Serve (1942), Neame, David Lean and producer Anthony Havelock-Allan formed a production company, Cineguild. His first big break came on Major Barbara (1941) after producer Gabriel Pascal quarreled with cinematographer Freddie Young, who was replaced by Neame, who had made some very successful tests with star Wendy Hiller.
After his boss, Claude Friese-Greene, collapsed on the set in an alcoholic stupor, young assistant cameraman Neame finished the picture, a quota quickie entitled Drake the Pirate (1935), as well as the next scheduled title, Invitation to the Waltz (1935). he was fired from The Seventh Sin (1957)and replaced with Vincente Minnelli,
In 1996 he unveiled a British Film Centenary Plaque commemorating the birth of his film star mother Ivy Close in Stockton on Tees. This can be found on the exterior wall of the now-closed Swallow Hotel.
He was legally separated from his first wife for 21 years before their divorce was finalized.