Magazine article American Cinematographer

Editor's Note

Magazine article American Cinematographer

Editor's Note

Article excerpt

Television cinematographers no longer feel obligated to qualify the scope of their work as "small screen." With the availability of high-definition home screens and production values at an all-time high, today's top TV projects are now commonly hailed for their compelling visual style.

To prove the point, we're showcasing three such productions in this issue, starting with the HBO telefilm Phil Spector. Juan Ruiz-Anchia, ASC renewed his ongoing collaboration with writer/director David Mamet to dramatize the first trial of the notoriously reclusive music producer, who was later convicted of second-degree murder for shooting actress Lana Clarkson in his California mansion. "Phil Spector was the first time David and I worked together on a television project, and it was our first digital collaboration as well," Ruiz-Anchia tells writer Michael Goldman ("Trials by Fire," page 28). "It was a different challenge for us, and I think it marked an evolution in our understanding of the craft."

Michael Weaver, ASC has already been celebrated for his work on the half-hour Showtime dramedy Caiifomicaikm, winning a 2009 Emmy Award (for the episode "In Utero") and a 201 1 ASC Award (for the episode "Suicide Solution"). His approach reflects the nature of the show's aptly named protagonist, writer Hank Moody: "I think of Calif omication as a comedy, but the visuals are always cued by the dramatic aspects of David Duchovny's character," Weaver tells Jay Holben (page 31). "Every episode really has its own look and style based on what he is experiencing."

On Chicago Fire, cinematographer Lisa Wiegand takes her cues from the blazes battled by the show's courageous firefighters. …

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