January 2023 Issue of American Cinematographer

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Our January 2023 issue has a special focus on the cinematographer-director collaboration, offering interviews with the teams behind the feature films Avatar: The Way of Water, She Said, Empire of Light, Devotion and Tár.


In our cover story, Russell Carpenter, ASC and director James Cameron take a deep dive into the complex production of their blockbuster 3D sci-fi sequel Avatar: The Way of Water. In the intimate English drama Empire of Light, Roger Deakins, ASC, BSC continues his collaboration with director Sam Mendes. To capture his portrait of a complex character in the award-winning drama Tár, director Todd Field enlisted the aid of Florian Hoffmeister, BSC, who composed a symphony of images using custom optics created by Christoph Hoffsten of Arri Rental Berlin. Erik Messerschmidt, ASC and J.D. Dillard discuss shooting the inspirational story of a pioneering U.S. Navy pilot in Devotion, employing numerous techniques to realize various flight sequences.


  • In his monthly column, ASC President Stephen Lighthill explains the current state of ASC membership, highlighting how today’s production opportunities have affected the Society’s invitation process based upon outstanding camerawork.


  • We look back at the outstanding career of famed still photographer and ASC associate member Douglas Kirkland.


  • Picture Partners: Cinematographer Natasha Braier, ASC, ADF and director Maria Schrader discuss how they forged a new creative partnership during the production of the revealing drama She Said.


  • Filmmakers’ Forum: Writer-Director James Gray details his close working relationship with Darius Khondji, ASC, AFC on the feature Armageddon Time.


  • Clubhouse News: Cinematographer Nicole Hirsch Whitaker is invited into ASC membership; Donald A. Morgan, ASC is honored by the Television Academy for his exceptional career; the Ojai Film Fest honors Steven Poster, ASC; our Education and Outreach Committee welcomes students to the Clubhouse; and director-cinematographer discussions highlight the online ASC Clubhouse Conversations interview series.


  • Wrap Shot: True Lies Looking back at the ambitious 1994 action film that marked the first collaboration between Russell Carpenter, ASC and James Cameron.

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