Global Developments

The more we look back on where we have come from, the more we see where we can go in the future.

Stephen Lighthill, ASC (top row, third from left), Paul Atkins, ASC (second from right), and ASC CEO Terry McCarthy (far right) in Austria with Jackson Wild participants.

We are pleased that this issue of AC will be distributed at Camerimage 2022 — the festival’s 30th edition! — as many of us return to the annual event after two years of shunning international travel due to the worldwide pandemic. Camerimage stands unchallenged as the premier cinematography festival in the world and is a gathering place for those of us who want to support cinematographers worldwide, show our community spirit and, of course, talk tech endlessly. We gather in groups, formal and informal, to discuss issues critical to the advancement of the art and craft of cinematography, whether those conversations address working conditions, workflow, diversity, or the erosion of authority. 

All of these pressing issues, and more, were also discussed at the ASC International Cinematography Summit, held this past June at our Society’s Clubhouse in Hollywood. Representatives from more than 40 cinematographic societies attended, and each shared a short reel of their fellow members’ work.

The ASC is proud to note that the reel showed by the Ukrainian Guild of Cinematographers (UGC) at the Summit will also be shown at Camerimage this year. The emotional presentation shows Ukrainian cinematographers who have put aside their cameras and donned military uniforms to fight for their country against the Russian invasion.

Many ASC members will serve on juries and appear at seminars during the festival, and we are delighted that the Society’s own Stephen H. Burum will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award for his amazing body of work.

In September, the ASC also partnered with the Jackson Wild Summit, held in Austria. For three days, Paul Atkins, ASC — a hugely accomplished natural-history cinematographer — and I presented Cinematography Awards and mentored nine young natural-history cinematographers from all around the world. 

This month, we also celebrate the long-gestating indie film 5-25-77, which features a fictionalized cameo by American Cinematographer magazine’s longtime former editor, Herb A. Lightman (yes, that really was his name). It is in the genre of Almost Famous, which also dramatized a director’s transformative early life experience (and featured a lovely job of cinematography by John Toll, ASC; see it if you love rock music). 5-25-77 also has cameos by AC magazine and the iconic ASC Clubhouse — built when there was nothing next door but orange groves. The more we look back on where we have come from, the more we see where we can go in the future.

Stephen Lighthill
President, ASC

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