Magazine article American Cinematographer

From the Editor

Magazine article American Cinematographer

From the Editor

Article excerpt

Some directors expect every member of the crew to read a script and become involved with the story of the movie they arc shooting. The assumption is that crew members will be able to do a better job if they understand how their contributions relate to the overall picture and also that the crew members will be willing to work harder if they understand and care about what the movie is saying. Many camera assistants, grips and electricians, on the other hand, would insist that their ability to function is in no way dependent upon an understanding of the script. The execution of a dolly shot or a light change requires a clear understanding of the effect that is sought, but the script probably contains little or no indication of this effect. The desired effect is the net result of the director's interpretation of the script, and it is best described for the crew in technical terms rather than by metaphors relating to character motivation or thematic elements in the script.

It is probably naive to expect a crew to understand a script in the same way the director does. It is the job of the director of photography to translate an understanding of the director's vision into technical requirements which can be clearly communicated to the crew. …

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