Wally Pfister, an ACADEMY AWARD®-winning cinematographer, recently turned his talents to directing. The result is Transcendence, a film that ponders the fraught relationship between humans and the technology they create. The film stars Rebecca Hall, Morgan Freeman, and Johnny Depp, who plays a scientist who defies death when his consciousness is transferred to the digital realm. Prior to Transcendence, Pfister was best known for his work as a cinematographer on the films of Christopher Nolan, including the stunning, spectacular imagery in films like Memento, The Prestige, Batman Begins, The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, and Inception. All those movies were shot on Kodak film, in some cases on large formats, like 65mm and even IMAX. Pfister and cinematographer Jess Hall, BSC chose to shoot Transcendence in 35mm anamorphic format with a photochemical finish.
During your cinematography career, did you know that someday you’d direct?
It was always in the back of my mind. I didn’t know that it would be a big Hollywood feature, but I can say that I knew I’d give it a shot one day. Even when I was working as a camera operator, the actors and their performances fascinated me, and I wanted to explore that in more depth. I’ve always been a musician, so I’ve really sunk my teeth into the music and sound aspects of directing, too. I’ve very much relished the writing process as well. The combination of the words and the way an artist like Johnny Depp brings them to life – let’s just say that I really had a lot of fun throughout the entire project.
For more than 20 years, Rosemary Blight has been at the forefront of Australia’s independent film movement. As a producer with Goalpost Pictures, one of the country’s best-known independent production companies, Blight has had a hand in bringing more than two dozen projects to fruition, for both the big and small screens. She has worked with the likes of such talents as Tom Wilkinson, Joel Edgerton, Chris O’Dowd and Charlotte Gainsbourg. And she has been recognized for her creative abilities with a slate of awards, including the Australian Film Institute AACTA Award for Best Film for The Sapphires.
Here, Blight talks about moving an audience, letting story dictate capture medium, and getting in the way of Tom Wilkinson.
John Wells’ career started with a simple ambition: “I had always wanted to tell lies about other people and get paid for it,” jokes the veteran writer/producer who has notched 830 credits, most notably as executive producer of China Beach, The West Wing and ER. From 1999 to 2001, he served as president of the Writers Guild of America, West — a two-year position to which he was re-elected in 2009. Though Wells’ television schedule keeps him busy, he has carved out time for a couple of features, including The Company Men and August: Osage County. Here, Wells talks about having lunch with Harvey Weinstein and film’s heightened sensibilities.
You got your start in the theater, then as a producer and writer for TV. Was making the leap to director always part of your plan?
I was trained as a director in college and it was always something I wanted to pursue, but it’s a very difficult leap to make. I wanted to stay in the entertainment business, so when the writing started to pay off, I pursued that, which led to some of the television producing, and then directing.
When Paul Korver founded Cinelicious in 2008, he had only one thing in mind — to move the state of film post production forward.
Korver’s Cinelicious is a post production studio, with locations in Hollywood and Santa Monica, offering a full slate of film and digital services. The company believes in respecting the craft and tradition of celluloid film, while leveraging all the benefits of the digital present. Cinelicious has been involved with high-level, film-based projects for directors such as Steven Spielberg, Christopher Nolan, J.J. Abrams, and Andrew Stanton, as well as studios including Paramount, Disney, Pixar, and Warner Bros.
Filmmaking is a family business for Rob Bowman. Taking a cue from his father Chuck—an Emmy-nominated writer, director, producer and television journalist—the younger Bowman got his start as a producer and director in the mid-1980s, working on such hit shows as The A-Team and Star Trek: The Next Generation. He solidified his reputation as a forward-thinking filmmaker when he earned his stripes as producer-director on The X-Files.
InCamera sat down with Bowman earlier this year as he was completing the 2012-2013 season of Castle. He talked about keeping up with the show’s lightning-fast pace and his penchant for Rocky Road ice cream.
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