Archive for the 'thefilmbook' Category

Philippe Rousselot’s book

thefilmbook by Benjamin BCinematographer Philippe Rousselot, AFC, ASC, recently published a wonderful little book on cinematography in France.

Although I cannot do justice to the depth and range of the French text, I have freely translated some excerpts to share a few of the book’s insights.

The bold emphasis is mine, and is not in the original text.


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Philippe Rousselot

Philippe Rousselot is a leading cinematographer whose credits include:
Diva, The Emerald Forest, Thérèse, Hope and Glory, The Bear,
Dangerous Liaisons, Too Beautiful for You, Henry and June,
A River Runs Through It, Interview with the Vampire, Queen Margot, Mary Reilly, Big Fish, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and
Sherlock Holmes.

Philippe’s work has earned him many awards, including an Oscar, a BAFTA, and 3 Cesars

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the book

Philippe’s thin elegant book is part of an ongoing series about “the wisdom of a métier”, and is therefore entitled The Wisdom of the Cinematographer.

The book offers an interesting breakdown of the key themes of cinematography.


Philippe Rousselot La Sagesse du Chef Operateur -thefilmbook-

table of contents

1. Images
2. Words
3. References
4. Movements
5. Order & disorder
6. Lights
7. Colors
8. Time
9. Night, day
10. Faces, landscapes
11. Representations
12. Reflections
13. Escape
14. Metamorphoses
15. Métiers

+++ Continue reading ‘Philippe Rousselot’s book’

Eric Kress Lighting Workshop – part 4

thefilmbook by Benjamin BThis is Part 4 of the Lighting Workshop that I organized with cinematographer Eric Kress during Gokinema at Gothenburg Film Studios.

Here I offer a video summary of the workshop, along with links to download the dailies.

The first 3 parts have generated many comments, questions and encouragements, in various blogs on the net, via email and in person. I try to respond to some of this feedback in this post.

If you’re intrigued by the video summary you might want to watch the 3 videos documenting the workshop — starting with PART 1.

Eric Kress Lighting Workshop part 4 - video summary presented by Benjamin B -thefilmbook-

The video summary places the dailies above the lighting diagrams for each of the 6 variations

Continue reading ‘Eric Kress Lighting Workshop – part 4′

Eric Kress Lighting Workshop – part 3

thefilmbook by Benjamin BThis is Part 3 of the Lighting Workshop I organized with cinematographer Eric Kress during Gokinema at Gothenburg Film Studios.

Thanks again for all the encouragements and thoughtful comments about Parts 1 & 2 !

If you haven’t seen them, I strongly recommend viewing the 2 earlier videos — starting with PART 1 — before watching this one. Here Eric shoots a matching reverse angle to what he shot before.

Eric Kress Lighting Workshop part 3 - C Pontus with side fill -thefilmbook-

Pontus Tornqvist Loven in side-fill variation from the Workshop by Eric Kress

Continue reading ‘Eric Kress Lighting Workshop – part 3′

Eric Kress Lighting Workshop – part 2

thefilmbook by Benjamin BThis is Part 2 of the Lighting Workshop I organized with cinematographer Eric Kress during Gokinema at Gothenburg Film Studios.

PART 1 of Eric Kress’ workshop has been very popular.
Thank you for all the encouragements and thoughtful comments !

If you haven’t seen PART 1, I strongly recommend viewing it before watching PART 2, which will make a lot more sense if you’ve seen what came before.

Eric Kress workshop - moderated by Benjamin B - sunlit interior close-up -thefilmbook-

Matilda Jelse in sunlit variation from the Workshop by Eric Kress

Continue reading ‘Eric Kress Lighting Workshop – part 2′

Eric Kress Lighting Workshop – part 1

thefilmbook by Benjamin BFor the past 3 years I have organized cinematography workshops & master classes at the Gothenburg Film Studios during their annual Gokinema event.

The Danish cinematographer Eric Kress led the first of these workshops, demonstrating the lighting of matched close-ups.

This is the first of several posts about Eric’s workshop

Eric Kress DFF -thefilmbook-
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Eric Kress

Eric Kress, DFF, is a leading European cinematographer whose credits include:
The Kingdom
Flickering lights
Arn the Knight Templar
Monica Z
and my personal favorite, the original 2009 version of
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

Eric has also shot some Danish television episodes, notably for the wonderful series Borgen, about a woman Prime Minister.
Continue reading ‘Eric Kress Lighting Workshop – part 1′

Peter Weir Interview: Inspiration

thefilmbook by Benjamin BGreetings from Los Angeles.

This interview with director Peter Weir returns to the theme of the creative process that I recently explored with Christopher Doyle.

I met the Australian director in Vienna at the Inspiration event, hosted by Imago. I shall return to this wonderful event in future posts.

Inspiration -Peter Interview by Benjamin B -thefilmbook-

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Peter Weir

Peter Weir is one of the world’s leading directors, his films are infused with poetry and entertainment. A recurring theme in his work is the clash of cultures.

His credits include:

The Last Wave
The Year of Living Dangerously
Dead Poets Society
Fearless
Master and Commander
and my personal favorite
Witness
Continue reading ‘Peter Weir Interview: Inspiration’

Ed Lachman’s Paris art show

thefilmbook by Benjamin BEd Lachman, ASC, recently invited me to the opening of his show at a Paris art gallery. I later spoke with Ed and the gallery director about this interesting blend of cinema and art.

This is the first time that I am including audio in a post. Until we can find an audio embed software solution, I recommend keeping the audio files in a small separate window so that you can continue to look at the images while you listen.

(click on any image in this post for a larger version)


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Ed Lachman and Gaspar Noe - Paris 2013 -photo by Benjamin B--

Ed Lachman, ASC and director Gaspar Noé at the opening of Ed’s show in Paris (photo Benjamin B)

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Ed Lachman

Ed Lachman began his career with cinéma vérité documentaries, working with the Maysles brothers on Christo’s Valley Curtain, Grey Gardens, and When We Were Kings.

Ed moved on to features, becoming a key figure in independent films. He worked with Sofia Coppola on her first film, Virgin Suicides, and lit Erin Brockovich for Steven Soderbergh. Ed shared director & cinematography credit with Larry Clark for the controversial Ken Park.

Ed has shot several projects for Todd Haynes, including Far From Heaven (nominated for a cinematography Oscar), I’m Not There, and the mini-series Mildred Pierce. Ed also shot the Paradise trilogy for Austrian director Ulrich Seidl.

It was telling that French auteurs Leos Carax and Gaspar Noé were among those who came to greet Ed at the chic opening of his art show at the Galérie Cinéma in Paris.
Continue reading ‘Ed Lachman’s Paris art show’

DPs and Gaffers – Hard Light, Fresnels vs PARs

thefilmbook by Benjamin BHappy New Year! I continue the popular DPs and Gaffers series. Here is part 5 from the seminar held at Camerimage 2012 in collaboration with my friends at K5600 Lighting.

In Part 1, the panel discussed who does what, and the difference between the American & European systems. In Parts 2 and 3, they discussed their lighting and rag lists. Part 4 was about the impact of digital.

Here the subject is hard light, along with a comparison of Fresnels versus PARs.


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The panelists: Vilmos Zsigmond, ASC, gaffer James Plannette, best boy Matthew Butler
Michel Abramowicz, AFC, gaffer Reuben Garret and moderator Benjamin B

DPs and Gaffers part 5 - thefilmbook
Continue reading ‘DPs and Gaffers – Hard Light, Fresnels vs PARs’

DPs and Gaffers – Digital

thefilmbook by Benjamin BMerry Christmas and Happy Holidays! I continue the popular DPs and Gaffers series. Here is part 4 from the seminar with DPs and gaffers, held at Camerimage 2012 in collaboration with my friends at K5600 Lighting.

In Part 1, the panel discussed who does what, and the difference between the American & European systems. In Parts 2 and 3, they discussed their lighting and rag lists.

Here the subject is the impact of digital on lighting for DPs and gaffers.


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The panelists: Vilmos Zsigmond, ASC, gaffer James Plannette, gaffer Reuben Garrett,
Michel Abramowicz, AFC, moderator Benjamin B, and best boy Matthew Butler

DPs and Gaffers - part 4 -thefilmbook-
Continue reading ‘DPs and Gaffers – Digital’

DPs and Gaffers – The Rag List

thefilmbook by Benjamin BThe first 2 posts of DPs and Gaffers have been very popular, with many people saying it was helpful, so I am continuing the series. So here is part 3 from the seminar with DPs and gaffers, held at Camerimage 2012 in collaboration with my friends at K5600 Lighting.

In Part 1, the panel discussed who does what, and the difference between the American & European systems. In Part 2, they discussed the lighting list. Here the subject is the rag list.


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The panelists: gaffer James Plannette, gaffer Reuben Garrett, best boy Matthew Butler
Vilmos Zsigmond, ASC, Michel Abramowicz, AFC, and moderator Benjamin B

DPs and Gaffers - part 3 -thefilmbook
Continue reading ‘DPs and Gaffers – The Rag List’