Jess Hall studied Film and Fine Art at St Martins College of Art, London and New York University. Before graduating he began an influential collaboration with the highly acclaimed contemporary choreographer William Forsythe. This produced two award winning films for the BBC focussing on the translation of three dimensional movement into a two dimensional medium.

In 2001 Hall photographed his first dramatic feature film 'Stander' for the director Bronwyn Hughes. The film features a powerful performance by Thomas Jane and was celebrated for its authentic portrayal of 1970's South Africa. Hall went on to photograph the iconic British comedy 'Hot Fuzz' written and directed by Edgar Wright. Produced by Universal/Working Title, the film was a critical and commercial success, setting records at the UK box office in its opening weekend and establishing a cult following in the US. Following this Hall photographed 'Son of Rambo' written and directed by Garth Jennings. The film charmed audiences at The Sundance Film Festival and has continued to be recognised as a classic in its genre.

In 2008 Hall received a Satellite Award Nomination for his cinematography on 'Brideshead Revisited'. Taking his lighting approach from the Dutch masters Hall crafted a dark yet luminous visual palette thus subtly reflecting the themes of love, faith, family and betrayal encompassed in the original novel by Evelyn Waugh. Another period film followed, 'Creation' directed by John Amiel and produced by Jeremy Thomas. Made with the collaboration and support of the Darwin family the film featured Paul Bettany as Charles Darwin and Jennifer Connelly as his wife Emma. Hall's photography successfully transcended classical period traditions to create an intimate film of emotional strength and depth. In 2010 He was invited to become a member of The British Society of Cinematographers.

Hall went on to photograph two US films. The dark romantic comedy 'The Switch' directed by Speck Gordon and the action comedy '30 Minutes or Less' directed by Reuben Fleisher. In doing so he continued to demonstrate his ability to move across genres effortlessly. His versatility as a cinematographer is further evident in his recent diverse choice of projects. This includes work on Kevin McDonalds documentary 'Marley', collaborations on commercial projects for clients such as Nike, BMW and Gatorade with high calibre directors such as; Spike Lee, Guy Ritchie and Rupert Sanders. Hall’s beautiful, naturalistic palette and poetic shot structure was celebrated on James Ponsoldt's feature 'The Spectacular Now' which took the ‘Special Jury Prize’ at Sundance 2013. For his latest feature Hall worked with oscar winning cinematographer turned director Wally Pfister on the technological thriller ‘Transcendence’ starring Johnny Depp, Rebecca Hall and Morgan Freeman.


Director: Josh Gordon, Will Speck

Writer: Allan Loeb (screenplay)

Producer: Albert Berger, Ron Yerxa

Executive Producer: Nathan Kahane, Kristin Hahn

Stars: Jennifer Aniston, Jason Bateman, Patrick Wilson, Jeff Goldblum, Juliette Lewis

Format: 35mm 2.35:1

Length: 101 min

Director: Reuben Fleisher

Writer: Michael Diliberti

Producer: Stuart Cornfeld, Ben Stiller, Jeremy Kramer

Executive Producer: Monica Levinson

Stars: Jesse Eisenberg, Danny McBride, Aziz Ansari, Michael Pena

Format: 35mm 2.35:1

Length: 83 min

Director: Edgar Wright

Writer: Edgar Wright

Stars: Jason Isaacs, Georgina Chapman

Format: 35mm

Director: Jon Amiel

Writer: John Collee

Producer: Jeremy Thomas

Stars: Paul Bettany, Jennifer Connelly, Benedict Cumberbatch, Toby Jones

Format: 35mm 2.40:1

Length: 108 mins

Director: Edgar Wright

Writer: Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg

Stars: Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Martin Freeman, Jim Broadbent, Paddy Considine, Timothy Dalton

Producer: Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Nira Park

Executive Producer: Natascha Wharton

Format: 35mm 2.35:1

Length: 121 mins

Director: Bronwyn Hughes

Writer Bima Stagg

Producer: Julia Verdin, Chris Roland, Martin Katz

Stars: Thomas Jane, David O’Hara, Dexter Fletcher, Deborah Kara Unger

Format: 35mm 1.85:1

Length: 111min

Director: Garth Jennings

Writer: Garth Jennings

Producer: Nick Goldsmith

Stars: Bill Milner, Will Poulter

Format: 35mm Anamorphic 2.40:1

Length: 96 min

Director: Julian Jarold

Writer: Andrew Davies, Jeremy Brock (screenplay)

Producer: Kevin Loader, Douglas Rae, Robert Bernstein

Executive Producer: David M Thompson

Stars: Ben Whishaw, Emma Thompson, Michael Gambon, Mathew Goode, Hayley Atwell, Felicity Jones

Format: 35mm 2.35:1

Length: 133 min

Director: James Pondoldt

Writer: Scott Neustadter, Michael H. Weber (screenplay)

Producer: Andrew Lauren, Tom McNulty, Shawn Levy

Stars: Shailene Woodley, Miles Teller

Format: 35mm Anamorphic 2.40:1

Length: 95 min

Winner - Grand Jury Prize, Sundance Film Festival 2013

Director: Wally Pfister

Writer: Jack Paglen

Producers: Andrew A. Kosove, Broderick Johnson, David Valdes, Aaron Ryder, Kate Cohen, Annie Marter

Executive Producer: Christopher Nolan, Emma Thomas

Stars: Johnny Depp, Rebecca Hall, Morgan Freeman, Paul Bettany Cillian Murphy, Kate Mara

Format: 35mm Anamorphic 2.40:1

Length: 119 min


Lincoln 'Anything But Everything Else'
BMW 'Hug More'
BMW 'Which Means'
BMW 'One Thing'
Acura 'Rides That Require Waivers'
Acura 'Whatever Ludacris Is Doing Right Now'
Acura 'Walking Away From Explosions'

Director: Rupert Sanders

The challenge was to blend the digital effects and live action inherent in the combining of two enormously different scales. We were combining elements of real basketball players (average height 7ft) with models of them (as small as 3 inches). This meant being very particular about matching the lighting and perspective of the various elements. The visual treatment needed to be other-worldly and cinematic but we were drawn away from the usual Hi-Tech science-fiction realisation and towards the sort of 'Post-Modern' vision of the future that Terry Gilliam visualises so well in 'Brazil'.

Director: Ringan Ledwidge

The use of the vintage Scooter pushed the spot towards a late 60's/70's aesthetic. We wanted to reflect this cinematically. This implied a looseness to the camera work and we threw the black and white in almost as a direct 'Nouvelle Vague' reference. We used a small hand-held Aaton (the camera originally designed for Jean Luc Godard) to capture some of the bike shots.

Director: Daniel Kleinman

'Evolution' combined many different processes, including green screen, CGI, time lapse photography, stock footage, live action, 35mm and digital stills. The shooting process required a lot of imagination and forward planning as to how the various elements would link together to form a coherent whole. An overall vision was required which Danny Kleinman provided and within that we needed both flexibility and technical precision.

I knew that we needed broad latitude in the negative as we would be integrating it with so many different elements. The challenge was to provide this but to retain enough integrity, strength and character in the lighting so as to guide the visual look in a strong direction.

Director: Chris Palmer

The director Chris Palmer's main request in our shooting approach was that performance was the key. He wanted to give the young actor a lot of freedom of movement and to enable this we tried to use natural light as much as possible so as not to inhibit his performance. This became the primary approach and only available light was used throughout the commercial, with the exception of two shots where one light was used. There was very little blocking and no focus marks. We organised the shooting around the times of the day that worked best for the natural light in the locations and then controlled the light using blinds, curtains and available practical sources where we could. The result is that we managed to capture a very natural and largely improvised performance.

Director: Ringan Ledwidge

The director Ringan Ledwidge and I are both fans of photographer Phillip Lorca DiCorcia. We'd been looking at his book 'A Storybook Life' which differs from his other work in the way that it is printed. Although much of the imagery originated from the earlier negatives, the prints are relatively low contrast and exhibit a kind of softness that is not found in the earlier prints (which were printed largely on Kodak Extacolor paper). We decided to apply some of this look to Lynx and as it was essentially a romantic story it seemed appropriate.

Director: Rupert Sanders

'Painting with Light' was a phrase coined by John Alton in his now famous book on cinematography. It is also a phrase that cinematographers frequently use to describe what they do. The idea of 'Liquid Light' was simple; we wanted to pain the car with light and to reveal it from the darkness. As John Alton claims 'I could see in the dark'. However we also wanted to see the light's movement as it illuminated or 'painted' the car. The technique was rather more complicated than the idea and utilised an 80 lens still camera rig with both simultaneous and sequential shutters. I am proud to say that the final result was achieved 95 percent in camera.

Director: Rupert Sanders

The idea behind Onvz was to contrast the harshness of the urban landscape with the fragility of the human form. This seemed to be better executed in black and white. As the tonal palette is simplified, the textures of the subjects become more descriptive. The look for Onvz came out of my love for experimentation in the dark room. It was through the use of black and white filters that I was able to control the contrast and tonal range of the piece and vary this from scene to scene.

Director: Rupert Sanders

Much of this commercial takes place in the imagination and it was important that the lighting reflected this. Stadium lighting can often be quite flat with multiple shadows and we decided to counter this and create dramatic lighting with the hereo 'T Mac' being picked out for a dark environment with roving spotlights, his form accentuated by rim light. We captured the fire sequence by using a real stuntman on fire dressed in black simulating T Mac's movements. This could then be tracked onto him in post. We then simulated firelight on T Mac and used real firelight on the background to create some interactive lighting in an attempt to keep the effects as organic and in camera as possible.

Director: Rupert Sanders

The look for Guinness was defined by reference footage that we saw of real volcanic eruptions. After the eruptions ash forms a thick haze in the air that shrouds the scene in a diffused and de-saturated half-light. During test I experimented with day for night shooting and various levels of under-exposure. I found a combination that worked shooting only in cloud cover or under large silks. We attempted to use as many in-camera effects as possible and to infuse the camera work with a sense of urgency that is inherent in a disaster situation.

Director: Rupert Sanders

The central image of this commercial is the classic painting 'The Concert' by Dutch artist Henrick Ter Brugghen (1626). For the end sequence we had to re-create the painting as live action so that we could blend between this and the still painting. Bringing the painting to life meant copying the brushwork of a Dutch Master in light! The lighting and composition in 'Restore' are more inspired by Johannes Vermeer than any other artist. His use of natural light originating from window sources is a constant inspiration to me.

Director: Ringan Ledwidge

Naturalism was an important quality to director Ringan Ledwidge who wanted warm tones and an engaging observational quality to the images. Rather than using any camera techniques or post to achieve the backwards motion we had all the people actually moving in reverse. Ringan was convinced this is what would give the film a charming quality. The most difficult part of the shoot was its execution. Multiple cameras, multiple languages, hundreds of extras and vehicles on a busy, dusty road in over 40 degrees heat, all surrounded by the chaos that is shooting in India.

To keep that sense of naturalism I worked only in natural light and produced a print at Deluxe UK to transfer instead of using the negative. We ended up grading on a Baselight 8 and using a print look up table (LUT) as this gave us more flexibility. I'm still satisfied that the quality of the film maintains its sense of integrity and photographic unity. Using the latest digital technology to enhance a photochemical look is something I have experimented with considerably on my features.

Director: Fredrik Bond

Shooting a scene like 'Space' as a DOP is a challenge partly because of all the outstanding work that has been done in this genre. Some of my favourite influences include; Geoffrey Unsworth's pioneering cinematography on Kubrik's '2001 A Space Oddesy, Jordan Cronenworth's timeless work on Ridley Scott's 'Bladerunner'. A great deal of our attention focussed on creating a lighting approach to simulate the nebula that the astronaugts gaze into. The nebula was key both to a visual strategy and the narrative. An infinite, vast and seductive source, transfixing our characters through its constantly changing and evolving nature. Our strategy was to use around 40 moving programmable sources bouncing into very large soft silver reflectors. We were able to subtly change the light reflected on the actors by keeping the lights in a state of constant motion and colour transition. By using various gobo's we could also change the shapes that were being reflected thus at least moving towards the complexity of colour, subtlety and transition that would exist in a real nebula. To create the sense of being in space and the lack of gravity we used a very particular type of camera movement. Using the Technocrane we kept the camera subtly moving and played with the third axis constantly.

I was trying to create a soft sensual world here. I used the same set of anamorphic lenses that I had used on Carling 'Space'. I loved the look of that and felt that they perfectly captured the combination of futurism and sensuality that he was looking for in 'From Sweden with Love'. We had an extremely large and complex lighting plan for the studio that actually is not particularly evident from watching the commercial. Shooting anamorphic meant that we were working at fairly high light levels on a large set and everything was on dimmers as it was all about organic transitions.

I knew these lenses quite well as I also shot 'Son Of Rambow' on them. This enabled me to know just how much I could shoot straight up into the light to get that slightly thin milky quality which also felt appropriate.

Director: Johnny Green

The stop motion element of this shoot made it an unusual and interesting challenge. We worked on multiple digital stills cameras simultaneously with the fine work of Drew Lightfoot - a first class animator in his own right and graduate of the Tim Burton school. This was combined with some high speed digital shots using the ‘Phantom’ and additional 35mm footage. Using digital stills is something that I had played with on Guinness ‘Evolution’- predominantly for the background plates. I enjoy the way that it gives you flexibility over the exposure independently enabling you to choose the specific level of motion blur appropriate for each shot. I had the luck to be taught by some great Eastern European animators at film school and the work of Jan Svankmajer. Still haunts my subconscious!

Director: Ringan Ledwidge

Deriving from the classical comedic tone of the script the visual treatment for this commercial required a simple approach. Any camera tricks or too many visual flourishes would deter from the story and the comedy. Ringan and I looked at ‘Seabiscuit’ – an inventory of techniques on how to shoot horse racing (some of which were more successful than others) and ‘Chariots of Fire’, almost camp in its lack of ironic self-reflection and unashamed use of slow motion to prolong the pinnacle of its dramatic moment…for almost too long! Shooting with the race horses presented us with some challenges as they could only do two runs a day and then needed to rest for several hours. Unfortunately this dictated much of the schedule rather than the path of the sun. We dispensed with green screen in all but one shot and instead relied on matching our moving plates and shooting subtly different camera speeds, with the horses and our hero, to give the illusion that he was travelling faster.

Director: Vince Squibb

Hovis presented a lovely opportunity to play with the films texture and to create a 1970’s look, as most of the story follows a young girl’s mischievous exploits during this period. I discovered a lovely set of old lenses that presented some challenges technically, but contributed to the ‘look’ considerably. As always with Vince Squib finding locations was a crucial part of the process and production designer Brain Morris did a fantastic job to adapt what was available. We shot 16mm to add grain and make the film reminiscent of the beautiful film stocks of the past. In addition I ‘pulled’ the film in processing to lower the contrast. Finally we produced two photochemical prints on different print stocks, a low contrast print on Fuji and a standard one on Kodak Vision. We took these into the Baselight and did some minor adjustments digitally; the final result was a combination of the two prints. The rest was achieved in the lighting, naturalism being the objective; the process however involved a considerable amount of work.

Director: Vince Squibb

I was delighted to finally have the opportunity to shoot in Tokyo Japan. Ironically our script took place in a small apartment that could have been built on a stage anywhere in the world. Despite this I was determined that the Tokyo nightscapes become a feature of the visual landscape of this film. Due to the restrictions of finding an apartment with the right view and shooting at nights with the child we opted to black out our set and composite plates of the night vistas in post. We also made a trans-light from photographs I took on my Cannon D5 that I had just bought in Tokyo and was enjoying playing with. In fact many of the night plates were shot on the D5 as it was easier gain permissions and to get a variety of plates from different positions around the city using this small unobtrusive camera than to drag a 35mm camera around. Essentially I treated this as a small dramatic scene from a movie and used somewhat classical framing and lens choice to imply tension and formality with the father whilst the shots of the ‘Guitar kid’ were, in contrast, looser and less composed. I particularly like the shot where he looks up at his reflection in the glass, beyond him is a plate that I ‘stole’ from the hotel bar just before departing for the Airport.

Director: Vince Squibb

Vince wanted this film to look as if it was shot under streetlights but also to retain an intimate and romantic quality between the couple. I knew the quality of light I wanted on the actors but achieving this on a four-way intersection at night in Asia without a true lock off was somewhat challenging. However we did not compromise too much and we worked around the traffic – literally! I made sure I kept the light levels low enough so that I could blend my own work with the ‘real’ night-lights that I could not change or control, or wanted to read in the background. Using the Zeiss Master Primes helped as I was often shooting around T1.6 and the fast aperture prevented me pushing the stock and picking up contrast, with the exception of a couple of shots.

Director: Frederick Bond

The look we were after was rich and cinematic. I managed to procure one of the few existing sets of the new Panavision G series Anamorphic lenses and shipped them to Cinecitta Film Studio’s in Rome which provided the perfect backdrop for our story. We had looked at Kubrick’s ‘Spartacus’ to provide inspiration for the colour palette and tonal range and I particularly liked the skin tones. Looking around the sets the exterior sets at the studio I noticed that the bounce light coming off the ochre stone provided a pleasing value for the skin tones I was after and I used this wherever possible. It was fantastic to be able to stage a scene in the beautifully restored Art Deco Fellini screening room at the studios which also provided a good testing ground for the flare potential of the new G series. They preformed admirably as the ghosts of the golden age of Italian cinema looked on.

Director: Stacy Wall

This Lexus commercial was a pleasure to shoot. The brief was fantastic in its simplicity-that each scenario should be a beautiful photograph. My approach was to embrace each location in its distinctiveness and to enhance rather than overpower it with my lighting style. When we used real music venues we employed the type of lighting rigs that they would actually use at a live event, when we were in domestic interiors we used predominantly practical lighting. So an aesthetic developed and I hope that the look we achieved is varied and yet consistent. As regards framing we repeated the use of various focal lengths at certain distances consistently to try and subliminally link the montage.

Director: Gary Shore

Gatorade ‘push’ involved some very specific technical challenges as creatively visualised by director Gary Shore. Firstly the speed of the camera movement needed to be kept consistent despite some changes in the length of the camera move and the size of the athletes. Secondly, we needed to develop from a wide shot to an extreme close up in one shot. In addition this needed to be executed in various locations and studio environments with precision, accuracy and elegance. The initial concept was that you felt that you were travelling down a tunnel and through the body to transition into the next scene. Gary’s instinct was that some form of direct front light on the athletes that fell off into half-light in the background would enhance the dynamics of the camera movement. This created a further challenge as the light source needed to originate as closely as possible directly from the cameras nodal point, without creating a camera shadow when we got to the macro end of the move.

I achieved this by transitioning between two light sources; a Mole beam positioned directly above the axis of the camera and an LED ring light positioned on the camera itself. I decided to use the Milo Motion Control System and a 27mm lens to execute the move. By using the new Red Epic we were able to shoot 96 FPS at 4k and create enough resolution to allow a digital zoom at the end of the move to aid the transition into extreme macro. At the time we of shooting were the first major TV commercial to use the Red Epic and we were occasionally updating the software between set ups!

Director: Johnny Green

This was my first experience shooting 3-D. Unfortunately at present you will only be able to view it on this site in 2-D. As cinematographers we are constantly using techniques developed in painting to ‘cheat’ depth into the two dimensional frame. Shooting 3-D we are no longer solely concerned with creating the illusion or sensation of perceived depth within a frame; instead we can explore ‘actual’ depth and make creative decisions about how to utilize this for visual and dramatic purposes. I was intrigued to explore choreographing the camera movement in three dimensions and curious as to how the format would impact composition and mis-en-scene. I found myself drawn naturally to wider lenses that reproduced the 3-D space more faithfully and employed a 30ft Technocrane to move the heavy camera system fluidly and stay close to the action. Developing shots and smooth camera movement opened perspectives and allowed time for the viewer to be immersed in the 3-D experience. We often varied the interaxial distance (IA) during the shot to achieve the desired intensity of 3-D, effectively moving things further forward or back in ‘theatre’ space. In one scene where the woman appears in the dolls house we effectively used the IA to enhance miniaturization. My conclusion was effective 3-D cinematography requires the film to be designed and shot with this in mind. There are questions that need to be answered in every shot and they need to be addressed correctly from both creative and technical perspectives.

Director: Benito Montoro

At the heart of this story I grasped at an emotional experience that I could relate to on a personal level. I understand the significance of 'returning home' because as a child I watched my father process this when we travelled from England back to Jamaica during the summer to visit my Grandparents. The colors of the Caribbean Ocean, to borrow a phrase from Miles Davies... 'Blue in Green', the smell of the streets, the reflective sheen of a thousand tones of black skin, the quality, power and saturation of equatorial light. These vivid glimpses I have carried with me throughout my life and they have stirred my memory and my imagination. For 'The Ticket' I tried to translate them into a Nigerian context and to capture that landscape, those memories and critically those faces with authenticity and love.

Director: Vince Squibb

This was exercise in minimalism as resources were extremely tight. It was practically one 'Man and a movie camera', except that we are in the age of digital ascendency. As such I thought this was an excellent opportunity to see what I could really do with the Cannon D1, a camera that seems to simultaneously delight producers and terrify cinematographers. The smallness of the camera was instrumental in creating an intimate atmosphere and allowing me to react quickly to capture the spontaneous intensity of the performance. I prioritized time of day, sun path and the right lenses to create an impressionistic image.

Director: Tim Godsold

Shooting with a digital camera in a environment engulfed in flames offered an excellent opportunity to examine the dynamic range of this format. Several years ago I had tested 3 digital cameras side by side with 35mm in a similar environment for the night exteriors of a feature film. On that occasion when we projected the tests we found that the digital cameras required a much deeper stop to hold the highlights in the flames and thus we opted to shoot 35mm film. However there have been significant developments since then.

The photographic approach to AXE required me to integrate my film lighting seamlessly with real firelight and balance to a digital sensor. My intention was for the scene to feel entirely lit by firelight. However I also needed to create a working environment that gave me more control and that was comfortable and safe for the actors. We used a variety of techniques to achieve this effect and by modifying our tools we were able to achieve this over relatively large areas. Primarily this required careful attention to the quality of firelight itself which has quite unique properties. I often find that it is the careful observation of and sensitivity to natural light that enables an artist to reproduce it successfully and with authenticity.

Director: Ringan Ledwidge

Part Road movie, Love story, Musical or Comedy; many genres were encompassed in this simple yet engaging idea. This could have led to complex visual departures but the essence of this story was its characters. The image we wanted to remain burned into the retina of the viewer was the faces of these two people. They would convey the emotion,the landscapes provided the backdrop. With the support of director Ringan Ledwidge I made some technical choices that would help enhance their characterization whilst bringing out subtle differences between their two environments. Meanwhile, to enable the edit to flow smoothly we chose to match certain frame sizes and compositions. We were also intentional about our choices of camera movement and screen direction. There was no strict doctrine, we responded to each location and each scene individually, maintaining an awareness that sometimes the most impactful option is to depart from the rules.

The Alexa Studio performed well and I was pleased with the addition of the mechanical shutter, which gave the motion blur a traditional photographic quality.

Director: Guy Ritchie

Whilst the transition to one’s and zero’s from silver halide particles is inevitable I continue to search for a digital format that can render color, in all its complexity, as satisfactorily as film. I was aware that Sony had made significant advancements in Digital capture with the F65 particularly in its rendition of color. The F65 CMOS sensor uses a color filter array (CFA) that allows each photosensor to detect red, green and blue independently. This allows for a fine interpretation and subsequently wide reproduction of colour. I found the results particularly apparent in skin tones and the colour green, significantly green is the colour in the spectrum to which the human eye is most sensitive.

If one looks at a self portrait painting by Van Gough for example we can see how the surface of the skin absorbs color from its environment, forming a range of hues within shadows and highlights that combine to create a complex, varied and vivid palette. Whilst I recognise that paintings are interpretive they also teach us something about ‘Ways of seeing’. This complexity of surface interests me immensely and capturing this in all its subtlety with the right balance of realism and artistic interpretation is an essential part of the photographic process. Sometimes I have found skin tones and texture in the digital format lacking, appearing somewhat flat and without depth or colour complexity. I have referred to it as comparing acrylic paint (digital) to oil painting (film)

Skin rendition was important in Guy Ritchie’s H&M commercial and I knew we would have to work fast in light that was not ideal. The F65 camera handled all this extremely well. Furthermore it did so in 4k and at 120 FPS when required.

Director: Rupert Sanders

Time was the most valuable resource on this project, primarily because of the limited availability of the athletes. To be efficient we used multiple cameras for the action sequences and pre-set cameras and track for upcoming scenarios. In combination with an extensive pre-light this approach enabled us to simply walk the athletes through a series of scenarios without wasting any time. I designed a 360 degree lighting plan for the stadium which enabled me to be ready to shoot in any direction within a couple of minutes. We had dimmers pre-set on all the lighting fixtures so we could switch frame rates immediately from anything between 24-120 FPS. Our main camera was the Alexa but we used the Cannon C300 on the ‘Swiffer Cam’ (Thank you Wally Phister ASC!) for those extreme low angle, fast moving shots. We also employed one of Optical Supports brilliantly designed rickshaws for fast moving handheld work, both following and pulling back with Kevin Durant.

Director: Rupert Sanders

A challenging task; two days to capture complex, in camera projections. Dynamic athletes moving within a circular glass set, intricate choreographed sequences and interactive lighting. We were striving for a sharp, contemporary and saturated image.

Our process was to combine an interesting level of experimentation in pre-production with clinical and efficient execution in the pre-light and shoot phase. One of our major challenges was to find a way to back project onto the 360 degree glass set without loosing its translucency. Meanwhile we experimented extensively with the recent developments in LED technology to achieve the ‘light ball’ and the graphic LED lines of the basketball court rendered in physical three dimensional space.

By finding ways to do these effects in camera the film retains a unique charm and character. Imperfections have their own quality, actors and athletes could respond to and interact with ‘real’ light. As a result the work retains life and integrity. Like jazz musicians we remain open, responding to opportunities as they appear before us.

Director: Rupert Sanders

‘Three is the magic number’....Three countries, three looks, three sets of lenses, three lighting designs, three colour palettes. In essence this was a simple approach, sometimes simplicity can be your most effective tool.

In terms of a shot structure we wanted to echo the sequence in each location, drawing attention to the repetition essential to the concept. We also wanted to avoid creating a film that felt sterile or formulaic. Developing from this approach we concluded not to be too literal in our formula. Instead of diligently matching lens size, subject distance and camera movement mathematically we kept the basic structure the same but gave ourselves some freedom; room to adapt to locations, choreography, blocking and performance. We spent a day blocking the first sequence as a rehearsal and shooting this on a small digital camera. We then sent this material to the editor who cut it, making sure we had a sequence that worked and (multiplied by three) could fit within the tight time line.

On this project I enjoyed working on the Arri Alexa, taking advantage of the opportunities it provides to work in low light with non-traditional lighting sources. Working with three different LUT’s (look up tables) I was able to create three looks and control them to a fine degree, maintaining consistency within each sequence and carrying these looks through into post production. As a result of streamlining this process with the DIT the final images resemble precisely what I was viewing and lighting on the set.

Director: Danny Kleinman

The major challenge of this production was shooting the roof top location work as night exteriors in New York. Access to the 45th story rooftop was extremely difficult and only available via a tiny elevator. This posed problems in terms of bringing in the bigger pieces of equipment that were required for a shoot like this such as camera platforms, rigging for stunts and lighting. Working at this altitude and given the nature of New York's Manhattan 'canyons', weather and in particular wind, became an important factor. Time with James Franco was of course a limited resource and in this instance things were made more complicated because we were going to be dangling him off a 45th story precipice. I decided to initiate a Plan A and Plan B approach for the location work. Plan A involved the best option in terms of photography but risked being compromised by weather conditions or time. Plan B was essential as I knew it could work quickly and in any weather conditions safely. Both plans were used at various points during the shoot. Matching lighting in the studio to our location plates was critical to the success of the composites on the falling shots. I was careful to balance color temperature, light direction and underexposure as closely as possible. James was shot on wires against green screen and I created moving light sources in the studio to simulate James's travel during falling. I created a descender rig on location using a Libra Head to gather moving plates. Working in Arri Raw on the Alexa I was able to maintain the integrity of the blacks, to give some additional flexibility to the latitude of the exposure curve and to provide a quality of separation on the green screen work that is essential to creating good mattes. The 4K Phantom was utilized for the 300-400 FPS work. Leica Summilux lenses gave me the crisp look and the T1.3 stop that I required for this challenging shoot.

Director: Rupert Sanders

Halo was quite simply the first TV commercial to be shot on the ARRI Alexa 65mm camera. 65mm is a format steeped in rich cinematic history. With the development of this camera cinematographers are enabled to explore this format's unique perspective and clarity through the medium of digital capture. I was extremely keen to experiment with this camera in the field and I would like to thank Neil Fathom, Dana Ross and the rest of the Arri group in London, Munich and LA who made this possible.


Transcendence Alcon Entertainment Wally Pfister

The Spectacular Now AL Productions/21 Laps/Global Produce James Ponsoldt

30 Minutes or Less MRC/ Red Hour Films/ Sony Ruben Fleischer

The Switch Disney/ Bona Fide Productions Josh Gordon & Will Speck

Creation Recorded Picture Company John Amiel

Brideshead Revisited Ecosse/ Miramax Julian Jarrold

Son Of Rambow Hammer & Tong/ Celluloid Dreams Garth Jennings

Hot Fuzz Working Title/ Universal Edgar Wright

Stander Seven Arts Pictures Bronwen Hughes

Short Films:

The Boy With Chocolate Fingers Gorgeous Chris Palmer

DON'T! Miramax/Big Talk Edgar Wright

(Trailer for Tarantino's Grindhouse)

Hideous Man Harry Nash Films John Malkovich

D-Minus Omaha/ Vague Terrain Rupert Sanders

Strap Hanging Bella Freud John Malkovich

The Cicerones FilmFour Jeremy Dyson


Marley Cowboy Films Kevin MacDonald

(additional photography)

From a Classical Position Channel 4 William Forsythe

(Improvised Dance featuring the choreographers William Forsythe and Dana Casperson)

Forsythe's Solo BBC Thomas Balogh

(Improvised Dance featuring the choreographer William Forsythe)

Selected Commercials Credits - 2003:

Lynx Small Family Bus. Ringan Ledwidge

Royal Caribbean Cowboy, Crossroads Nick Lewin

COI Brave David Hartley

Hewlett Packard Outsider Rupert Sanders

Adidas Outsider Rupert Sanders

BT Outsider Paul Gray

Carte Noir Premiere Heure Anthony Atanasio

Selected Commercials Credits - 2004:

Adidas Omaha Rupert Sanders

Adidas Small Family Bus. Ringan Ledwidge

Adidas Small Family Bus. Ringan Ledwidge

Stella Artois Small Family Bus. Ringan Ledwidge

Got Milk Omaha Rupert Sanders

Carlsburg 2AM Paul Goldman

Barclays Outsider Rupert Sanders

Lucozade Brave Warren Du Preez & Nick Thornton-Jones

Pierre Cardin Brave Warren Du Preez & Nick Thornton-Jones

COI Small Family Bus. Ringan Ledwidge

Anti-Smoking Campaign Outsider David Lodge

Saturn Crossroads Nick Lewin

Selected Commercials Credits - 2005:

Tetley Bitter MJZ Matthijs Van Heijningen

Snickers Gorgeous Peter Thwaites

Guinness Kleinman Productions Daniel Kleinman

Vodafone Gorgeous Peter Thwaites

Total Gorgeous Peter Thwaites

VW Gorgeous Chris Palmer

Stella McCartney Blink Lynne Fox

Reebok MJZ Rupert Sanders

Adidas MJZ Rupert Sanders

Global Fund Exposure Thomas Napper

Canon 2AM Andy Margetson

Citroen Outsider Predro Romhanyi

Propel Omaha Rupert Sanders

Selected Commercials Credits - 2006:

HSBC Gorgeous Chris Palmer

Itv I-Dents Blink Pliex

National Lottery Kleinman Productions Daniel Kleinman

Visa Furlined Jess Hall

Heineken Outsider Jess Hall

Selected Commercials Credits - 2007:

Carling Sonny London Frederick Bond

Fiat Movie Magic Anthony Atanasio

Orange Rattling Stick Ringan Ledwidge

Bavaria Beer Stink David Frankham

DHL Rogue Erich Joiner

Gatorade Furlined Jess Hall

Espn Furlined Jess Hall

Ballantines Outsider Jess Hall

Selected Commercials Credits - 2008:

Orange Rattling Stick Ringan Ledwidge

Heineken Stink Stylewar

New Balance MJZ Fredrik Bond

Royal Mail Knucklehead Johnny Green

T Mobile Partizan Traktor

Volvo Sonny Fredrik Bond

Anti Smoking Gorgeous Chris Palmer

Addidas Stink Psyop

Visa Soft Citizen Jess Hall

Bell Soft Citizen Jess Hall

Selected Commercials Credits - 2009:

Nike Imperial Woodpecker Stacey Wall

Sunchips Gorgeous Vince Squibb

Coi (CO2) Stink Neo

Weetabix Rattling Stick Ringan Ledwidge

Aviva Epoch Phil Morrison

Drug Driving Rattling Stick Ringan Ledwidge

VW Sonny London Frederick Bond

Renault Knucklehead Siri Bunford

Aviva Epoch Phil Morrison

Hi Bonkers Brent Harris

Morgans Spiced Rum Knucklehead Zak & Dan

Chevrolet TempoMedia Tomato

Wells Fargo Epoch Phil Morrison

Selected Commercials Credits - 2010:

Lexus Gorgeous Stacy Wall

Hovis Gorgeous Vince Squibb

Fifa Knucklehead Johnny Green

Shell Gorgeous Vince Squibb

Galaxy The Sweet Shop Kathy Prosser

Itv Blink Pleix

Love Film Knucklehead Charlie Crane

Selected Commercials Credits - 2011:

Gatorade Anonymous Content Gary Shore

John Lewis Rattling Stick Ringan Ledwidge

Old Spice Biscuit Filmworks Tim Godsal

Expedia Independent Films Michael Downing

Ford Gorgeous Vince Squibb

Nestea Blink Speck Gordon

Sony Gorgeous Johnny Green

REN Gorgeous Vince Squibb

Selected Commercials Credits - 2012:

Heineken MJZ Rupert Sanders

Nike Rattling Stick Ringan Ledwidge

Jordan MJZ Rupert Sanders

Lincoln Imperial Woodpecker Stacy Wall

NBA Pony Show Spike Lee

H&M Reset Guy Ritchie

Barlaycard Gorgeous Chris Palmer

Guinness Blink Benito Montorio

AXE Biscuit Tim Godsall

Money Supermarket Furlined Speck Gordon

BMW Interrogate Snorri Brothers

Selected Commercials Credits - 2013:

Gatorade MJZ Rupert Sanders

Nike MJZ Rupert Sanders

Target Partizan Augustus Punch

VISA Partizan Antoine Bardou Jacquet

Selected Commercials Credits - 2014:

Verizon Rattling Stick Danny Kleinman

HR Block Reset Martin Werner

Coke The Corner Shop Peter Thwaites

Chevy Furlined Speck Gordon

All state The Corner Shop James Rousse

Acura Reset The Tilford Brothers

Corona Smuggler Todd Field

Samsung Biscuit Aaron Stoller

Hyundai Biscuit Aaron Stoller

NSA Reset Marcus Walter

Selected Commercials Credits - 2015:

Halo MJZ Rupert Sanders

Nascar Smuggler Todd Field

Gatorade Furlined Martin and Lindsay

Hyundai Biscuit Aaron Stoller

BMW MJZ Rupert Sanders

Budweiser Reset Adam Hashemi

AT&T The Corner Shop Peter Thwaites

Charter MJZ Pelorian Brothers

Sprint MJZ Rupert Sanders

Direct TV MJZ Rupert Sanders

Cisco MJZ Rupert Sanders

Adobe MJZ Fredrik Bond

The New Yorker Reset JC Chandor

Facebook Kapsized Scott Trattner

Blue Cross Smuggler Todd Field

Selected Music Video Credits:

Massive Attack Black Dog H5

All Saints Science Douglas Avery

Eagle Eye Cherry Bullet Jamie Morgan

Martine Mccutheon Academy Stephen Mead

Oxide & Neutrino HLA Dempseys

Straw Serious Pictures Mark Adcock

Embrace Science Ben Swift

Super 8 Tony Kaye Films Rupert Sanders

Gilbride Big Chief Jan Russell

Love Babies Dreamchaser Roger Pomphrey

Strangelove Handbag Matt Wakeman

Cleopatra Tony Kaye Films Rupert Sanders

Selected Awards:

International Press Academy's Satellite Award Nomination 2008
Cinematography: Brideshead Revisited

British Television Craft Award 2008
Best Camera Operator: Carling Space

British Design & Art Direction Awards For Outstanding Cinematography 2005
Silver Pencil: Lynx

British Design & Art Direction Awards For Outstanding Cinematography 2005
Silver Pencil: ONVZ

British Television Craft Award 2005
Best Camera Operator: Canon 'Playtime'

Interviews & Articles:

Halo 5 Goes 65 - ( 2015 )

Variety's 10 Cinematographers to Watch - ( 2014 )

American Cinematographer: Second Life - ( May 2014 )

Brain Storm: Jess Hall on Transcendence - ( April 2014 )

ONFILM Interview - ( December 2013 )


2015 American Film Institute - Cinematography

2014 Goldsmiths University London - School of Media and Communications. Cinematography Masterclass

2014 American Film Institute - Cinematography

2014 NAB - Creative Masters Series


Independent (UK):

Oxford House
76 Oxford St
London W1N OAX
T: +44 (0)18 4426 1744

Commercials: Rachael Taylor

Features: Sue Greenleaves

United Talent Agency (USA):

9560 Wilshire Blvd.
Beverly Hills, CA 90212

Commercials: Robert Arakelian
T: +1 310 860 3741

Features: Pete Franciosa
T: +1 310 246 6047