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Commercial Spotlight: Cinematographer Kai Saul

“The last few months have been busy again,” says cinematographer Kai Saul, referencing the return of productions following the motion-picture industry’s abrupt shutdown earlier this year in response to COVID-19. “My crew and I are incredibly grateful to be back to work. Everybody understands how important it is to stay safe and healthy so we can keep working. We trust each other to be safe on and off set, and, knock on wood, we’ve all been okay.”

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Filmmaker Focus: Em Weinstein

Writer-director Em Weinstein’s short film In France Michelle Is a Man’s Name premiered in August at the Outfest Los Angeles Film Festival, where it was awarded the Grand Jury Prize, U.S. Narrative Short. Shot on location in Oregon, the film focuses on Michael (Ari Damasco), a young trans man who returns to his rural home and attempts to reconnect with his mother and father (Olga Sanchez and Jerry Carlton, respectively). Following an uneasy dinner, Michael joins his dad for a drive, but their early bonding soon gives way to a chasm of misunderstanding.

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Back to Work

Cinematographers Deepa Keshvala, James Rhodes, Robbie Ryan, BSC, ISC and Nanu Segal share their on-set experiences since returning from lockdown.

Nick Cave, front man of The Bad Seeds, sits alone in an abandoned conference room, quietly writing in a notebook. Closing the book, he stands and begins to walk, moving through a series of equally empty spaces: down a wide staircase, through a mural-lined hallway, across an auditorium. Finally, he strides through an oversized doorway and into an expansive theater, where a grand piano is situated in the middle of the otherwise unadorned floor. Taking a seat at the piano bench, he moves his hands to the keys and begins to play.

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Through Her Lens

Made In Her Image and Panavision partner for a virtual roundtable spotlighting women filmmakers of color

On July 14, Made In Her Image , Panavision, Light Iron and LEE Filters presented the virtual roundtable discussion “Through Her Lens: Creating a Truly Inclusive Film Industry.” Moderated by Made In Her Image founder Malakai and featuring cinematographers Mia Cioffi Henry, Melinda James, Kira Kelly, Cybel Martin, Keitumetse Mokhonwana and Sade Ndya, the conversation addressed inequities within the motion-picture industry through the lens of women of color behind the camera. 

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Detective Story

Patrick Cady, ASC details the procedures he and his collaborators — including Light Iron Supervising Colorist Scott Klein — followed to take Bosch Season 6 from prep through post.

Inspired by Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch novels, the Amazon Prime Video police-procedural series Bosch premiered its sixth season on April 17. The show has also been renewed for a seventh and final season, offering one last outing for the eponymous LAPD homicide detective (played by Titus Welliver).

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Golden-Hour Sci-Fi

Jeff Cronenweth, ASC employs Panavision’s DXL2 and large-format optics, and reteams with Light Iron supervising colorist Ian Vertovec, to lend a sense of nostalgia to the twilight-lit landscapes of Tales From the Loop.

Tales From the Loop, a new eight-episode series now streaming on Amazon Prime Video, explores the goings-on in a small Ohio town situated atop a mysterious machine that has made the stuff of imagination into an everyday reality for the local residents. Based on the paintings of Swedish artist Simon Stålenhag, the series was written by showrunner Nathaniel Halpern, and the pilot episode reteamed director Mark Romanek with longtime collaborator Jeff Cronenweth, ASC.

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Smart Solutions for Quibi’s Dummy

Panavision and Light Iron help DP Catherine Goldschmidt pioneer a pipeline for Dummy, a made-for-mobile production requiring both 16:9 and 9:16 framing.

Short-form streaming-video platform Quibi provides premium content specifically designed for consumption on a mobile device. This presented the production of its first scripted show, Dummy, with a unique set of creative and workflow issues.  

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A Fight to Remember

DP Jacques Jouffret and director Dave Wilson carve out an aggressive filmmaking style for a comic-book tale of an amnesiac super-soldier

In a cinematic universe expanding with superheroes, the creative challenge for filmmakers is to set newcomers apart from the crowd. The task is doubly important for Bloodshot, the first installment of a new franchise that Sony Pictures plans for characters of comic-book publisher Valiant Entertainment.

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