Matthew Libatique, ASC helped director Jon Favreau bring this classic Marvel Comics character to the silver screen. Shooting in Playa Vista and Downey Studios and on locations ranging from Los Angeles’ Disney Concert Hall to Las Vegas’ Caesars Palace, the filmmakers pulled out all the stops to tell the story of Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), a millionaire playboy and weapons manufacturer who puts himself inside his technology to battle crime and his old business partner, Obadiah Stane (Jeff Bridges). Libatique and co. takes readers into Stark’s secret headquarters to reveal how they created the hero’s high-tech milieu.
David Tattersall, BSC discusses his recent collaboration with the Wachowski brothers (creators of the Matrix trilogy) on this live-action version of the popular 1960s Japanese animated series. Speed Racer was produced in Germany at Babelsberg Studios, where filming took place entirely against greenscreen. The Wachowski brothers filmed in high-definition video for the first time; to give the film the appearance of real-life anime, they employed special techniques to keep both the foreground and background of scenes in focus. Tattersall offers AC full details about the groundbreaking approaches he and the Wachowskis brought to the project.
Dante Spinotti, ASC, AIC was behind the camera on this adult drama about an accountant (Ewan McGregor) who is introduced to a mysterious sex club by his lawyer friend (Hugh Jackman), which leads him become the prime suspect in a woman’s disappearance and a multimillion-dollar heist. Spinotti discusses his experiences working on location in New York and Madrid with first-time director Marcel Langenegger.
ASC/Academy Award winners and nominees
In our annual salute to the year's best cinematography, we offers a pictorial recap of this year’s ASC Awards weekend and acknowledge the accomplishments of all the directors of photography who were honored at this year's ASC and Academy Award ceremonies: Roger Deakins, ASC, BSC (No Country for Old Men; The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford); Robert Elswit, ASC (There Will Be Blood); Janusz Kaminski (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly); and Seamus McGarvey, BSC (Atonement).
Academy Scientific and Technical Awards
We present a full recap of this year's ingenious honorees, whose technical contributions to filmmaking were feted on February 9 during a prestigious dinner at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills, California. Included in our coverage are profiles of the evening’s major individual award recipients: David A. Grafton, who received the Gordon E. Sawyer Award; David S. Inglish, who earned the John A. Bonner Award; and Jonathan Erland, who took home an Award of Commendation.
The May issue’s departments also offers illuminating insights:
Short Takes presents interviews with student cinematographers Andrew M. Davis of Chapman University and Sean Stiegemeier of the American Film Institute, whose respective films The Line and The Butcher’s Daughter earned them the Laszlo Kovacs Heritage Award at this year’s ASC Awards ceremony.
Production Slate offers insights from Fred Murphy, ASC about his work on the dramatic feature Anamorph.
Post Focus presents a comprehensive look at the recent 4K restorations of all three Godfather films by renowned film preservationist Robert Harris and a team of experts, who received valuable input from Allen Daviau, ASC and the trilogy’s director of photography, Gordon Willis, ASC; this section also offers an overview of the latest upgrades to the Avid Media Composer (version 2.7.5), which includes a new function that allows color information, as defined by the ASC CDL (Color Decision List), to be passed through the entire editorial process, from dailies to the digital-intermediate stage.
Filmmakers’ Forum offers an article by Levie Isaaks, ASC about his recent experiences teaching cinematography to Iraq War veterans.