Sunday, October 17, 2010

Look for these cinematographers names come Oscar time

Well I did a minor experiment last night. I noticed lately, and it's normal, that we have been discussing the best picture and acting categories a lot. That's a no brainer, as those are the most popular categories obviously. But I went to my personal favorite category, cinematography, and broke it down to the very most realistic contenders. Basing my logic on the cinematographer's status ( popularity ) or the certain type of film that will use impressive camera and lighting work.

I started with 40 DP's and cut it down to 20. As in I think it's about a 90% chance the 5 names you see nominated will be one of these 20 on this list. Then I made a " next 5 " for those that might play spoiler and surprise.

I list the names of the cinematographer, what film they represent this year, how many nominations they have received in the past and the current project they are working on. Done in alphabetical order. Yes, I'm a freak but I have been doing this for years, mostly for my own records on spreadsheets.

2010 cinematographers with the best chance at Oscar nominations...

David Boyd- Get Low- 0 Oscar nomination's. Mostly a television dp. Notable work: Deadwood, Without A Trace, Friday Night Lights. Kit Kittredge: An American Girl first feature film. A name to keep your eye on. He could earn a Spirit nod easy

Russell Boyd- The Way Back- 1 Oscar win and nomination ( Master and Commander ) Many Australian Film Institute nominations. Notable work: Gallipoli, Picnic at Hanging Rock, Tender Mercies, Mrs. Soffel.

Danny Cohen- The King's Speech- 0 Oscar nominations. Earned an Emmy and 2 BAFTA nods. Notable work: Pirate Radio, Longford, John Adams.

Jeff Cronenweth- The Social Network- 0 Oscar nominations. Son of Oscar nominated Jordan Crenoweth ( Peggy Sue Got Married ) Graduate of USC Film School. Notable work: Fight Club, One Hour Photo, K-19: Widowmaker.

Roger Deakins- True Grit- Most nominated DP working. 0 wins, but 7 Oscar nominations as well as many ACS nods. Works hands on. Notable works: Shawshank Redemption, The Man Who Wasn't There, Fargo, No Country For Old Men. Also shot The Comany Men due in 2010 as well.

Robert Elswit- The Town- 1 Oscar win ( There Will Be Blood ) one other nomination ( Good Night and Good Luck ) Notable Work: Duplicity, Michael Clayton, Syriana, Boogie Nights. Currently shooting Mission: Impossible IV for Brad Bird.

Adriano Goldman- Conviction- 0 Oscar nominations. Did get a Independent Spirit nomination for Sin Nobre. Other notable work: City Of Men, The Year My Parents Went On Vacation.

Hoyt Van Hoytema- The Fighter- 0 Oscar nominations. Notable work: Let The Right One In, The Girl. Currently shooting a new version of the Le Carre Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy for Tomas Alfredson starring Colin Firth, Gary Oldman, Ciaran Hinds, Jared Harris, Mark Strong, Tom Hardy, Christian McKay and Stephen Graham. This will def. be one to look for.

Matthew Libatique- Black Swan- 0 nominations. Very good argument he should have for The Fountain. Notable work : Iron Man 1&2, Miracle at St Anna, Gothika, Everything Is Illuminated. Just finished Cowboys and Aliens for Jon Favreau.

Anthony Dod Mantle- 127 Hours- 1 Oscar win and nomination ( Slumdog Millionaire ) Notable Work: Antichrist, The Last King Of Scotland, Dogville, Manderlay.

Claudio Miranda- Tron: Legacy- 1 Oscar nomination ( The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button ) Notable works: Failure To Launch, A Thousand Roads. Currently in Pre-Production on Life Of Pi with Ang Lee.

John Mathieson- Robin Hood- 2 Oscar nominations ( The Phantom Of The Opera, Gladiator ) Notable work: August Rush, K-Pax, Kingdom Of Heaven. Currently has 2 more films ready for 2010, Brighton Rock and Burke and Hare for John Landis.

Wally Pfister- Inception- 2 Oscar nominations ( The Dark Knight, The Prestige ) Notable work: Batman Begins, The Italian Job, Laurel Canyon, Insomnia. Just finished shooting Moneyball for Bennett Miller.

Rodrigo Prieto- Biutiful- 1 Oscar nod ( Brokeback Mountain ) 2 ACS and BAFTA's nominations. Notable work: State Of Play, Lust, Caution, 21 Grams, 25th Hour, Frida. Just finished Water For Elephants for Francis Lawrence.

Robert Richardson- Shutter Island- 2 Oscar wins ( JFK, The Aviator ) with a total of 6 Oscar nominations. Notable work: Inglourious Basterds, A Few Good Men, Born On The 4th Of July, Platoon. Just finished shooting Hugo Cabret for Martin Scorsese.

Harris Savides- Somewhere- 0 Oscar nominations. Notable work: Greenberg, Milk, American Gangster, Zodiac, The Game. Just finished Restless for Gus Van Sant.

John Seale- The Tourist- 1 Oscar win ( The English Patient ) 4 total Oscar nominations. Notable work: Cold Mountain, The Perfect Storm, The Talented Mr. Ripley, Rain Man, Witness. In pre-production for Christian McKeller's Trevi.

Dean Semler- Secretariat- 1 Oscar win ( Dances With Wolves ) Notable work: Apocalypto, Appaloosa, The Alamo, We Were Soldiers, Dead Calm.

Eduardo Serra- Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows Part I- 2 Oscar nominations ( The Girl With a Pearl Earring, Wings of the Dove ) Notable work: Defiance, Blood Diamond, Unbreakable. Has finished Deathly Hallows Part II.

Tom Stern- Hereafter- 1 Oscar nomination ( Changeling ) Notable work: Things We Lost In The Fire, Letters from Iwo Jima, The Exorcism Of Emily Rose, The Last Kiss, Mystic River. Currently has Second Coming and Hoover projects in Pre-Production.

So there's your 20. I almost added Doug Liman ( Fair Game ), Michael McDonough ( Winter's Bone ) Stephen Fontaine ( The Next Three Days ) Yorick Le Saux ( I Am Love ) and Steven Fierberg ( Love and Other Drugs ) but I kept it at the 20 that mostly likely have the best shot. Then you will be 8-10 of those 20 listed that have much better chances than the other. But out of respect for who they are I listed 20. There are a few leading favorites, as every year, you just know are getting in.

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Started to really pay attention to film ( movies ) what was going on in front of the camera, but more interestingly, behind it as well at about as far back as age 10. Motion pictures ( when good ) are a fascinating medium. All the work and prep that goes into filmmaking. It's an amazing process !