Without doubt, movies are the most collaborative artistic medium, and streaming has made this year’s contenders more available than ever before. Some of the most memorable artisan aspects of filmmaking are Cinematography, Editing, Production Design, Costume Design and Sound, all contributing to the ultimate success of a film.
Directors of Photography honored by the Cinematography branch are Sean Bobbitt (“Judas and the Black Messiah”), Erik Messerschmidt (“Mank”), Dariusz Wolski (“News of the World”) Joshua James Richards (“Nomadland”) and Phedon Papamichael (“The Trial of the Chicago 7”).
Sean Bobbitt is a firm believer in ‘less is more.’ Consider the scene where LaKeith Stanfield’s petty crook Bill O’Neal tries to escape a local gang and a low-angle shot clearly shows a knife coming from the top of the car, instilling fear in the character and viewer, all from the perspective of the gas pedal.
“’Citizen Kane’” provided context for our film,” admits Erik Messerschmidt, “but what we did was very different. It was more of a springboard, and we certainly borrowed things. (Director) David Fincher was very specific about what he wanted to reference. Deep focus was important, along with low camera angles. A lot of that comes from ‘Citizen Kane,’ but it also comes from vintage black-and-white.”
Dariusz Wolski recalls, “We all grew on Westerns, and we just wanted to make ‘News’ contemporary. We incorporated handheld that doesn’t look as if it’s handheld. I believe in simplicity. We didn’t use cranes. We didn’t use fancy equipment. It is kind of nice to restrain yourself.” Continue reading on AWARDS INTELLIGENCER Intelligencer