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2013 / 11 — November Issue of American Cinematographer
2013 / 11 — November Issue of American Cinematographer

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The November 2013 issue of American Cinematographer magazine:

Gravity (Warner Bros.)
Emmanuel Lubezki, ASC, AMC shot this technically daunting sci-fi drama about two American astronauts (Sandra Bullock and George Clooney) stranded in space above Earth after an accident damages the International Space Station. Lubezki discusses his collaborations with director Alfonso Cuarón and visual-effects supervisor Tim Webber, as well as his use of a pioneering rig to integrate Arri Alexa footage with VFX imagery.

All Is Lost (Roadside Attractions)
Frank DeMarco shot this solitary, nearly dialogue-free drama that follows the desperate efforts of a sailor (Robert Redford) trying to survive alone on the open ocean after his boat collides with a shipping container. DeMarco discusses the challenges of working on the water during his second collaboration with director J.C. Chandor (Margin Call) at various locations in and around California, Mexico and the Bahamas.

Captain Phillips (Sony)
Barry Ackroyd, BSC and director Paul Greengrass paired up for a third time on this film about the 2009 hijacking of the cargo ship MV Maersk Alabama by Somali pirates. True to their documentary backgrounds, the filmmakers shot nearly the entire movie on actual ships off the coast of Malta and in the Atlantic Ocean near a Norfolk, Va. naval base. Ackroyd shot 16mm for the portions of the film that followed the Somali pirates, 35mm for scenes aboard the western vessels, and an Arri Alexa for aerial footage.

Metallica Through The Never (Picturehouse)
Gyula Pados, HSC served as director of photography on this eye-popping 3-D Imax experience. Directed by award-winning filmmaker Nimród Antal (Kontroll, Predators) the production combines spectacular onstage concert footage of Metallica with eerie narrative sequences that follow the surreal journey of a young roadie (Dane DeHaan) sent on a mid-concert mission through a nighttime cityscape filled with phantasmagorical challenges. Up to 24 cameras were simultaneously employed at points during shooting, requiring Pados to coordinate the complex visual logistics.

The November issue's departments also offer interesting highlights:

  • Short Takes presents insights from cinematographer Autumn Durald about her work on the London Grammar video "Strong."

  • Production Slate offers an interview with Sean Bobbitt, BSC about his work on the feature 12 Years a Slave, as well as a piece detailing the strategies Tobias Schliessler, ASC applied on the drama The Fifth Estate.

  • Post-Focus takes readers on a tour of Chainsaw post's new 10,000-square-foot editing facility in Hollywood.

  • Filmmakers' Forum presents a piece by John Bailey, ASC on his experiences shooting movies with indie budgets.

  • ASC Close-Up profiles Society member Seamus McGarvey, ASC, BSC, who recently won a BSC Award for his work on the lush period drama Anna Karenina. (He also earned Academy, ASC and BAFTA Award nominations for both Anna Karenina and Atonement.) His feature credits also include The Avengers, We Need to Talk About Kevin, Nowhere Boy, The Soloist and High Fidelity, and he is currently completing postproduction on Godzilla.