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2016 / 12 — December issue of American Cinematographer
2016 / 12 — December issue of American Cinematographer

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The December 2016 issue of American Cinematographer magazine, which features a special focus on holiday-season releases.

Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk

John Toll, ASC joined director Ang Lee for this big-screen adaptation of Ben Fountain’s award-winning novel of the same name. 19-year-old Billy Lynn (Joe Alwyn) is an Army private who survives an especially tense firefight in Iraq; he recalls that day’s tragic events in a series of flashbacks while he and his comrades are saluted for their service during a football game’s halftime show. Toll and his colleagues detail their unique, innovative technical approach — which included recording 120 fps 4K footage in 3D with Sony F65 cameras — for this character-driven drama.


Don Burgess, ASC continued his long-running collaboration with director Robert Zemeckis for this romantic thriller about two spies — Max Vatan (Brad Pitt) and Marianne Beausejour (Marion Cotillard) — who fall in love during a mission to assassinate a German official. Set against the backdrop of World War II, the feature was shot in London and the Canary Islands. Burgess and his collaborators discuss their workflow, which incorporated Red Weapon Dragon cameras and Leica lenses.

Rules Don’t Apply
(20th Century Fox)

Caleb Deschanel, ASC was behind the camera for this 1950s-set romantic comedy-drama about the star-crossed relationship between Frank Forbes (Alden Ehrenreich), a driver and aspiring entrepreneur, and actress Marla Mabrey (Lily Collins), both of whom are in the employ of the singular Howard Hughes (played by the movie’s writer-director-producer, Warren Beatty). Deschanel discusses how he created an appropriately period look for the Los Angeles-based production.


Bradford Young, ASC partnered with director Denis Villeneuve for this journey into the unknown. When mysterious spacecraft arrive in locations around the Earth, the United States assembles a team — including linguist Louise Banks (Amy Adams), mathematician Ian Donnelly (Jeremy Renner), and Army Colonel Weber (Forest Whitaker) — to investigate and, if possible, communicate with the extraterrestrials. Young spoke with AC just after the feature screened at the recent Toronto International Film Festival.

The December issue’s departments also offers illuminating insights:

Short Takes pulls back the curtain on the ambitious science-fiction short Kryo, shot by Frederick Gomoll.

Production Slate visits Manchester by the Sea, photographed by Jody Lee Lipes, and catches up with A Street Cat Named Bob , shot by Peter Wunstorf, ASC.

ASC Close-Up spotlights Society member Checco Varese, whose credits include the features Under the Same Moon, Prom Night, Pacific Rim, The 33 and Miracles From Heaven, and episodes of the series True Blood, Reign and The Strain.