cinematography

John Huston – Hollywood Titan, Rebel, and Renaissance Man

John Huston – Hollywood Titan, Rebel, and Renaissance Man

On August 5, 1906, American film director, screenwriter, and actor John Huston was born. Huston has been referred to as “a titan”, “a rebel”, and a “renaissance man” in the Hollywood film industry. He wrote the screenplays for most of the 37 feature films he directed, many of which are today considered classics. During his 46-year career, Huston received 15 Oscar nominations, winning twice, and directed both his father, Walter Huston, and…
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Breaking New Grounds in Cinematography – Stanley Kubrick

Breaking New Grounds in Cinematography – Stanley Kubrick

On July 26, 1928, American film director, screenwriter, producer, cinematographer, and editor Stanley Kubrick was born. He is regarded as one of the greatest filmmakers of all time. His films, typically adaptations of novels or short stories, are noted for their unique cinematography, attention to details to achieve realism and an inspired use of music scores. Clockwork Orange, 2001, Full Metal Jacket, Lolita, The Shining, ‘I’m Spartacus’ or Dr. Strangelove – they…
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Peter Lorre – A Stranger in Paradise

Peter Lorre – A Stranger in Paradise

On June 26, 1904, Hungarian-born American character actor of Jewish descent Peter Lorre was born. He went down in film history in 1931 with his portrayal of the uncanny child murderer in Fritz Lang‘s classic M.[1] After his emigration he worked as a successful character actor of often shady characters in Hollywood, among others in The Maltese Falcon, Casablanca, and Arsenic and Old Lace. “You know I can get away with murder.…
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Fred Zinneman – From High Noon to The Day of the Jackal

Fred Zinneman – From High Noon to The Day of the Jackal

On April 29, 1907, Austrian-born American film director Alfred “Fred” Zinneman was born. Fred Zinneman won four Academy Awards for directing films in various genres, including thrillers, westerns, film noir and play adaptations. He was among the first directors to insist on using authentic locations and for mixing stars with civilians to give his films more realism. “I’m not in pictures to promote my private personality. I’m in it for the joy…
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Charlie Chaplin – Making Motion Pictures the Art form of the 20th Century

Charlie Chaplin – Making Motion Pictures the Art form of the 20th Century

On April 16, 1889, English comic actor, filmmaker, and composer Charlie Chaplin was born. Chaplin rose to fame in the era of silent film. He became a worldwide icon through his screen persona, “The Tramp“, and is considered one of the most important figures in the history of the film industry with a career that spanned more than 75 years. I wanted everything to be a contradiction: the pants baggy, the coat tight,…
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Plumbing the Nature of American Myth-Making – Hollywood Director John Ford

Plumbing the Nature of American Myth-Making – Hollywood Director John Ford

On February 1, 1894, American film director John Ford was born. John Ford is renowned both for Westerns such as Stagecoach (1939), The Searchers (1956), and The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962), as well as adaptations of classic 20th-century American novels such as John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath (1940). Until today his four Academy Awards for Best Director remain a record. “I don’t give ’em a lot of film to…
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Ernst Lubitsch and the ‘Lubitsch Touch’

Ernst Lubitsch and the ‘Lubitsch Touch’

On January 28, 1892, German American actor, screenwriter, producer and film director Ernst Lubitsch was born. His urbane comedies of manners gave him the reputation of being Hollywood‘s most elegant and sophisticated director. Early German Years Ernst Lubitsch was born in Berlin and was apprenticed as a merchant. However, the son of a fashion designer and tailor quickly became the student of Max Reinhardt. Reinhardt was back then an important an influential person…
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Sergei Eisenstein and the Art of Montage

Sergei Eisenstein and the Art of Montage

On January 22, 1898, Soviet film director and film theorist Sergei Mikhailovich Eisenstein was born. Eisenstein is considered a pioneer in the theory and practice of montage. He is noted in particular for his silent films Strike (1925), Battleship Potemkin (1925) and October (1928), as well as the historical epics Alexander Nevsky (1938) and Ivan the Terrible (1944, 1958). “American capitalism finds its sharpest and most expressive reflection in the American cinema.”…
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Federico Fellini – Realist of the Fantastic

Federico Fellini – Realist of the Fantastic

On January 20, 1920, Italian film director and screenwriter Federico Fellini was born. Known for his distinct style that blends fantasy and baroque images with earthiness, he is recognized as one of the greatest and most influential filmmakers of all time. “All art is autobiographical; the pearl is the oyster’s autobiography.” — Federico Fellini, in The Atlantic (December 1965) Early Years Federico Fellini was the first of three children to be born…
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Metropolis – A Cinematic Vision of Technology and Fear

Metropolis – A Cinematic Vision of Technology and Fear

On January 10 1927 German expressionist epic science-fiction film Metropolis directed by Fritz Lang  premiered in Berlin. Metropolis is regarded as a pioneer work of science fiction movies, being the first feature length movie of the genre and one of the most expensive movies of its time. The First SciFi Blockbuster If you like science fiction movies and you don’t know Metropolis, you have missed the very first blockbuster of this popular genre.…
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