2018 / 01 — January issue of American Cinematographer

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The January 2018 issue of American Cinematographer magazine, which features a special focus on awards-season releases.

The Shape of Water
(Fox Searchlight)

Daniel Laustsen, ASC, DFF was behind the camera for director Guillermo del Toro’s unconventional love story, which finds Elisa Esposito (Sally Hawkins) falling for a humanoid creature (Doug Jones) who was captured from the waters of South America. Laustsen and his colleagues discuss the techniques they brought to bear in realizing the onscreen fantasia, which was shot on stages and locations in and around Toronto.

Darkest Hour
(Focus Features)

Bruno Delbonnel, ASC, AFC enlisted for director Joe Wright’s historical drama about British Prime Minister Winston Churchill (Gary Oldman) during the early days of World War II. Delbonnel details the U.K.-based production, which employed Arri Alexa cameras in the process of crafting its period palette.


Phedon Papamichael, ASC, GSC and director Alexander Payne continued their longtime collaboration with this satirical story about Paul and Audrey Safranek (Matt Damon and Kristen Wiig, respectively), a married couple faced with the choice of whether or not to be shrunk. Papamichael shares his perspective on the features large- and small-scale comedy.

Curb Your Enthusiasm

Patrick A. Stewart took the cinematography reins for the long-awaited return of creator-producer-star Larry David’s no-holds-barred comedy series. Stewart welcomed AC to the set and offered a behind-the-scenes tour of the production, which this season has adopted a three-camera approach as part of Stewart’s bid to expand the show’s look.

The Disaster Artist

Brandon Trost joined director-actor James Franco for this true-life tale of the making of The Room, which has been heralded as “the greatest bad movie ever made.” Franco stars as that production’s writer-producer-director, Tommy Wiseau, who also starred in The Room as lead character Johnny. Trost peels back the layers of this voyage behind the scenes of a cult classic.

The January issue’s departments also offer illuminating insights:

Shot Craft presents a primer on aspect ratios — their history, evolution, changing standards and correct numbers — and takes a close look at the Super 35 and VistaVision formats.

Short Takes catches up with Logan Fulton, Connor Ellmann and Favienne Howsepian, the winners of the ASC Andrew Lesnie Student Heritage Awardsand ASC Haskell Wexler Student Documentary Award.

Post Focus details the National Film Board of Canada’s presentation of Expo 67 Live, a cinematic storytelling experience created entirely with archival treasures presented on 52-foot-high surfaces with spatial audio.

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