No Pain, No Gain

Salvatore Totino, ASC, AIC, tackles Concussion’s tale of sudden impact with the ARRI ALEXA XT

Concussion examines the hot-button issue of how repeated impacts to the skulls of professional football players in some cases led to death from brain trauma now known as CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy). The documentaries Head Games and League of Denial preceded this film, both highlighting football-related brain injuries, with the latter featuring... Read more

Through The Woods, Darkly

How director Jason Zadaand cinematographer Mattias Troelstrup, DFF, stepped outside their comfort zones and into The Forest

A few years ago, Jason Zada got the idea to make Facebook scary. Take This Lollipop, a short-form interactive experience that won Zada an Emmy®, used Facebook pictures and messages of existing users to integrate them into a horror story all their own making. It was viewed by over 100 million people globally and garnered 13 million Facebook Likes, making... Read more

Hearts In Darkness

DP Reed Morano, ASC, takes the directorial reins in a gritty exploration of grief and hope in Meadowland

If you were to try summing up Cinedigm’s release Meadowland in just one word, “unflinching” certainly is among the first that comes to mind. The feature film directorial debut of cinematographer Reed Morano, ASC, chronicles the painful journey of schoolteacher Sarah and uniformed police officer Phil (producer Olivia Wilde and Luke Wilson) as they... Read more

Pushing The Limits

Robert Gantz, ASC, goes with the ARRI ALEXA XT to deliver a true cinematic look for the TV series Limitless

2011 saw the release of the indie hit thriller Limitless, a critical and box office success directed by Neil Burger. The film followed a struggling writer, played by Academy Award® nominee Bradley Cooper, with the ability to access 100% of his brain’s power after taking a drug called NZT. A new CBS series of the same name picks up where the movie... Read more

Rising DPs Get Their Props

The 2015 Emerging Cinematographer Awards recognizes some of the industry’s next visionaries

Founded in 1996 by Rob Kostichek, Jr., the International Cinematographers Guild’s Emerging Cinematographers Awards (ECAs) is a talent showcase of up-and-coming union cameramen and women. The annual awards show gives promising cinematographers crucial exposure in the motion-picture industry. In 2007, guild president Steven Poster, ASC, ushered... Read more

From Lockerbie To Libya

A real-life spy thriller, the documentary My Brother’s Bomber contemplates loss, love, revenge and the nature of obsession through the lens of the war on terror

My Brother’s Bomber isn’t your typical piece for FRONTLINE. The emotional and suspenseful documentary is a three-part investigative series airing on the critically acclaimed PBS show this fall. Directed by Ken Dornstein, My Brother’s Bomber revisits one of the biggest air disasters in history, the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over... Read more

The Troubles With Doubles

Shot on the ARRI ALEXA, the razor-sharp comedy Break Point features a burned-out tennis pro and his estranged brother who try to win a long-shot slot into a Grand Slam—and heal a fractured family along the way

In spite of seemingly obvious compositional possibilities, competitive tennis has rarely been the focus in theatrical motion pictures. In fact, outside of 1979’s Players (directed by Anthony Harvey with cinematography by James Crabe, ASC) and the more recent Wimbledon (helmed by Richard Loncraine and shot by Darius Khondji, ASC, AFC), precious few... Read more

2,300 Feet Below

Checco Varese, ASC, takes on a technically challenging shoot for The 33, the story of the Copiapó mining accident and the ordeal of the men trapped belowground

A harrowing true story, The 33 retells the desperate plight of the men trapped in a collapsed Chilean copper-gold mine for 69 days in 2010. Abandoned and left to slowly die by their employers, the men—united by fellow miner Mario Sepúlveda (Antonio Banderas)—band together to persevere. Pressures brought by their families eventually turn the tide... Read more

A Boy Is A Dangerous Thing

Cary Fukunaga uses the ARRI ALEXA XT for Beasts of No Nation to follow the journey of a boy who finds himself a child soldier in war-torn Africa

In a few short years, the multitalented Cary Fukunaga has established himself as a genre-defying auteur, juggling multiple projects as writer, director, cinematographer and producer. Recognized as one of the most exciting visual stylists today, Fukunaga made his feature debut with Sin Nombre, work that collected cinematography and directing awards at... Read more

Manhattan Misadventures

Writer-director Noah Baumbach and DP Sam Levy shoot 2K for a ’70s-inspired look in their latest collaboration, the funny, slightly dangerous screwball comedy Mistress America

Neurotic New Yorkers. Messy relationships. Art house sensibilities. The Manhattan skyline. It may sound like the perfect recipe for a Woody Allen film circa the late ’70s, but, in fact, all these ingredients—along with a good serving of comedy—form the basis of Mistress America, the latest film from acclaimed writer-director Noah Baumbach that... Read more

Speaking Truth To Power

A quarter-century after the incendiary N.W.A shook the establishment cage, director F. Gary Gray and DP Matthew Libatique, ASC, deliver Straight Outta Compton, which follows the birth of the iconic group and their music

F. Gary Gray first made his name directing hit music videos for artists such as TLC, Cypress Hill, Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, Queen Latifah and Whitney Houston before helming his first feature film, the popular urban comedy Friday. Gray followed that up with an eclectic string of maverick movies that included Set It Off, The Negotiator, The Italian Job, Be... Read more

Breaking The Law

With the RED EPIC DRAGON, DP Arthur Albert creates a new look for AMC’s Better Call Saul

For all the Breaking Bad junkies who had to deal with withdrawal symptoms when the acclaimed drug drama finally ended, relief—and another fix of Walter’s shady, but witty lawyer Jimmy McGill (aka Saul Goodman)—came just in time thanks to the new AMC prequel series Better Call Saul. Also created by Bad‘s acclaimed writer/producer team... Read more