A spiraling VFX history in the Star Trek franchise has led to the latest installment, with effects vendor Double Negative supplying VFX fireworks as the Starship Enterprise goes down blazing in Star Trek Beyond
Kimberly French © 2015 Paramount Pictures Star Trek ’s history with visual effects has been both acclaimed and troubled—sometimes for the very same project. The original series, which began airing on NBC 50 years ago, required the services of four separate vendors in order to continue to meet airdates. Unlike several Irwin Allen sci-fi series... Read more

Bourne Is Back

Cinematographer Barry Ackroyd, BSC, combines film and digital acquisition methodologies with a documentarian’s eye to capture Jason Bourne
All Photos: Jason Boland © Universal Pictures
AN AMNESIAC ASSASSIN PURSUED RELENTLESSLY by his former employers struggles to survive long enough to discover his identity. This was the premise of 2002’s The Bourne Identity, an adaptation of spy novelist Robert Ludlum’s popular series, starring Matt Damon as Jason Bourne. The initial entry in the Bourne series was directed by Doug Liman and... Read more

The Gold & The Cold

Phedon Papemichael ASC, GSC, bestows ARRI ALEXA 65 splendor upon Cedric Nicolas-Trojan's Huntsman Sequel
2012’s Snow White and the Huntsman reimagined the timeless legendary fairy tale with a flourish, augmenting its considerable star power with an array of breathtaking visuals. The film had come about after veteran commercial director Rupert Sanders, aided by his longtime associate and VFX supervisor Cedric Nicolas-Troyan, fashioned a proof-of-concept... Read more

The High Life

Indie filmmaker Ben Wheatley and cinematographer Laurie Rose go upscale to adapt J.G. Ballard’s sci-fi classic High-Rise

Producer Jeremy Thomas had been hoping to make a film from author J.G. Ballard’s High-Rise for decades, dating back to the novel’s publication in 1975, even involving Nicolas Roeg as director at one point. Heralded as a leader of New Wave science-fiction that redefined the genre as a field addressing sociological, as well as hard science, during... Read more

Shooting Blind

Despite dumping most of his gear and breaking the monitor on his EPIC-M RED DRAGON, filmmaker Renan Ozturk and his climbing team completed Down To Nothing, a documentary following the perilous ascent of one of Southeast Asia's tallest Mountains
In fall 2014, cinematographer Renan Ozturk and five fellow explorers set out on the daunting mission to scale Myanmar’s Hkakabo Razi. The goal was to determine which mountain in the far-eastern Burmese Himalayas is tallest, it or neighboring Gamlang Razi, measured a year earlier via GPS at 19,259 feet. The group consisted of elite climbers accustomed... Read more

Moody Blues

Stefan Czapsky, ASC, reveals his fresh approach to capturing cinematic visuals on NBC’s latest hit, Shades of Blue

Shades of Blue, the new NBC police series starring Jennifer Lopez, starts with a bang. Lopez plays Harlee Santos, a single mother and resourceful, but compromised detective at the heart of a tight-knit crew of Brooklyn detectives. Led by enigmatic Lt. Matt Wozniak (Ray Liotta), Santos is looking far from glamorous while confessing to all manner of shady... Read more

Collision Course

Cinematographer Ed Wild brings distinctive lighting to a film set full of high-tech auto gear and extensive car chases in Collide

As thrilling and challenging as it is for any cinematographer to shoot Jaguars racing down the Autobahn highway system in Germany or capturing BMWs flipping over multiple times, cinematographer Ed Wild was also tasked with creating very different and distinct lighting palettes for scenes in the action thriller/love story Collide. Written and directed... Read more

Darkest Before Dawn

If you’re suffering from comic book overkill, you’re in for a treat watching Gotham on Fox, a sinister city captured in gritty realism by DP Crescenzo Notarile, ASC, AIC

Fast-paced and somber, the Fox show Gotham expertly balances several storylines at once, featuring David Mazouz as a young Bruce Wayne, Ben McKenzie as Detective James Gordon and Donal Logue as Harvey Bullock, Gordon’s sidekick cop partner. The show is as much about the criminals as the good guys, and the iconic Batman characters are still on screen,... Read more

A Boy And His…Dog?

The ARRI ALEXA Plus and the DepthKit supply the tools for the proof-of-concept short MILES, powerful visionary work that earned a huge development deal and a greenlight as a full-length feature

The story for The Terminator evolved from an initial image in the mind of writer/director James Cameron, that of a gleaming metal skeleton emerging from billowing flames. For filmmaker Oliver Daly, his proof-of-concept short film MILES came about in a similar fashion, the vision of a mechanized creature keeping pace alongside a motocross biker sparking... Read more

Sundance 2016

The Sundance Film Festival welcomed the world to Utah once again, continuing its mission to introduce us to a diverse mix of highly entertaining and culturally significant work from around the globe

While films continually flickered on screens around Park City, the movie market set to work, but acquisitions seemed to be a mixed bag this year. While huge bids were made on quality material—among them, Fox Searchlight’s record-breaking deal of $17.5 million for director Nate Parker’s Grand Jury Prize- and Audience Award-winning The Birth of... Read more

The Shape Of Things To Come

The 2001 File reveals how Stanley Kubrick exploited the arts and sciences to visualize 2001: A Space Odyssey

Sir Christopher Frayling’s extensive illustrated volume, The 2001 File: Harry Lange and the Design of the Landmark Science Fiction Film (Reel Art Press, 2015), documents the design evolution for all manner of vessel and future construct in Stanley Kubrick’s groundbreaking space film 2001: A Space Odyssey. Frayling, author of Ken Adam Designs the... Read more

Road Trippin’

A fascination with Charles Manson serves as the backdrop for Manson Family Vacation, an exploration of family and friendship for estranged brothers who go on a creepy adventure following the death of their father

Somewhere in the darkly gray area between buddy comedy, road trip movie, family drama and suspense-thriller lies Manson Family Vacation, the compelling story of two brothers who not only have lost their connection to each other, but also to their lives. One brother is angst-ridden Nick Morgan, played by Jay Duplass, the real-life brother of writing/directing/producing... Read more