The ASC’s Centennial Salute — Since January 8, 1919

Each month this year, American Cinematographer will shine a light on a different facet of the Society’s past and present to chronicle 100 years of Loyalty, Progress and Artistry. 

On Jan. 8, 1919, the American Society of Cinematographers was officially chartered by the State of California. Born out of two prior organizations, New York’s Cinema Camera Club and Los Angeles’ Static Club of America, the Society was founded by a group of 15 directors of photography: Joe August, L.D. Clawson, Arthur Edeson, William C. Foster, Eugene Gaudio, Fred LeRoy Granville, Walter L. Griffin, J.D. Jennings, Roy H. Klaffki, Victor Milner, Robert S. Newhard, Philip E. Rosen, Charles E. Rosher, Homer A. Scott and L. Guy Wilky. (Complete bios on each here.)

Within its first year, 50 more cinematographers were invited into membership, and in the century since, the ASC has continued to grow in both its ranks and its impact on the motion-picture industry around the globe — all the while holding true to its motto of “loyalty, progress, artistry.” (Full history here.)

Each month this year, in celebration of the ASC’s 100th anniversary, AC will shine a light on a different facet of the Society’s past and present. We’ll examine the history of the ASC Awards and the Society’s famed Clubhouse, the influence the ASC’s members have had on technology and visual effects, the global reach of the membership, the Society’s education and inclusiveness initiatives, evolutions in lighting styles and techniques, and more. 

In August, the entire issue will be dedicated to the centennial, with content including a detailed history of the ASC, rare photos, updates on Society events and much more.

The party’s just beginning. Thank you for joining us during the celebration.

Playlist here.

Rachel Morrison, ASC, Fruitvale Station (2013).
Ted McCord, ASC, The Sound of Music (1965).
Sven Nykvist, ASC, Cries & Whispers (1972).
Ellen Kuras, ASC, A Little Chaos (2014).
Linwood Dunn, ASC, Star Trek (1966).
Oliver Marsh, ASC (in white shirt and tie at right), Soul Mates (1925).
Reed Morano, ASC, I Think We're Alone Now (2018).
Robert Burks, ASC, The Wrong Man (1956).
Owen Roizman, ASC (white cap), The French Connection (1971).
Michael Chapman, ASC (pointing), Raging Bull (1980).
Karl Struss, ASC (far left), Babe Comes Home (1927).
James Wong Howe, ASC (wearing cap), Hud (1963)
Ernest Dickerson, ASC (on right), Do the Right Thing (1989).
Dennis Muren, ASC, E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (1982).
Charles Lang, ASC, Sabrina (1954).
Bradford Young, ASC, Solo (2018).
Arthur Edeson, ASC, Robin Hood (1922).

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