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2011 / 04 — April Issue of American Cinematographer
2011 / 04 — April Issue of American Cinematographer

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The April 2011 issue of American Cinematographer magazine, which offers a special focus on digital production techniques and a roundup of eye-catching films from the Sundance Film Festival.

Hanna (Focus Features)
Alwin Küchler, BSC teamed with director Joe Wright to tell the story of a 16-year-old girl named Hanna (Saoirse Ronan), who has been raised off the grid by her ex-CIA father (Eric Bana) and trained to be an expert assassin. When her father sends her out into the world, Hanna is embroiled in a lethal game of cat and mouse, pursued across Europe by intelligence operative Marissa Wiegler (Cate Blanchett). Küchler details his approach to the ambitious project, which involved filming in Germany, Finland, England and Morocco.

Mildred Pierce (HBO)
Ed Lachman, ASC joined director Todd Haynes for this retelling of author James M. Cain's Depression-era drama. The five-part HBO miniseries features Kate Winslet as Mildred, a single mother striving to keep her family afloat in middle-class Los Angeles and struggling to salvage her relationship with her elder daughter, Veda (Evan Rachel Wood). Lachman discusses re-creating period Los Angeles onstage and on location in New York City.

Sundance Film Festival
Each January, cineastes and industry insiders flock to Park City, Utah, to attend this key festival, which continues to serve as a launch pad for the careers of countless independent filmmakers. Once again, AC's team of writers braved the wintry clime in order to scout out the most visually compelling entries for our annual roundup.

Digital Imaging, Part 1
AC technical editor Christopher Probst turned his eye to the variegated landscape of contemporary digital imaging to offer the first in a two-part series focused on the technology behind the imaging sensors from today's leading digital-camera manufacturers.

Filtration for 3-D Filmmaking
Drawing on more than 30 years of experience developing and manufacturing optical-filtration solutions for motion-picture camera systems, ASC associate member Ira Tiffen offers a detailed examination of the particular challenges of incorporating filtration in 3-D productions.

The April issue's departments also offers illuminating insights:

  • Short Takes goes behind the scenes of a recent French theatrical commercial for B Telecom shot by Chris Soos.

  • Tricks of the Trade takes a look at the techniques Alan Caso, ASC has been employing on the CBS series The Defenders to accomplish fast turnarounds on set.

  • Production Slate presents interviews with cinematographer Adriano Goldman about his work on director Cary Fukunaga's adaptation of Charlotte Brontë's Jane Eyre and Lukas Ettlin about warding off an alien invasion for the science-fiction feature Battle: Los Angeles, directed by Jonathan Liebesman.
  • ASC Close-Up spotlights Society member Dennis Muren, whose visual-effects credits include Equinox, Star Wars, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, The Abyss, Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Jurassic Park and Twister.