Cinematographers of the Round Table

By  · Published on January 9th, 2017

An extensive conversation with the most-talked about DPs of 2016.

One of my favorite things about awards season has to be The Hollywood Reporter’s annual roundtable series where they host conversations between groups of industry insiders – actors, actresses, directors, producers, writers, showrunners et cetera – who have had a significant impact on the year in entertainment. Of the bunch, my favorite hands-down is the cinematographers’ roundtable if only because this isn’t a group that gets the spotlight shone on just them all that often, and the insight they can provide into the heart of their respective films – what makes them move, what makes them breathe, what makes them be – is privileged and unparalleled, even when compared to that offered by the films’ writers or directors.

This year, as usual, THR has assembled a motley mix of shooters: Rodrigo Prieto (Silence, Passengers), Linus Sandgren (La La Land), John Toll (Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk), Charlotte Bruus Christensen (Fences, The Girl on the Train), Bradford Young (Arrival), and Caleb Deschanel (Rules Don’t Apply). In the following hour-long video documenting their conversation, these esteemed DP’s from a variety of backgrounds and with a variety of industry experiences discuss the highs and lows of their field and their art, including tidbits about being inspired by directors (then actually working with them), the guilty versatility of the iPhone, and the seemingly-constant ideological battle between the virtues of shooting on film versus shooting digitally.

The result is a discussion that’s both creative and practical and grants a look at the filmmaking process from both those sides: how a project is conceived, and how it is realized. There really is no other perspective quite like a cinematographer’s, they are the line between art and product, and how they navigate the tightrope-walk across that line makes for some fascinating conversation.

To see the video, just hit the link below.

Cinematographer Roundtable: Film vs. Digital, Working With Scorsese and Which Phone Takes the Best Pictures

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