The Society of Camera Operators honored 27-year-old Sarah Jones Saturday night at its annual Lifetime Achievement Awards show at the Skirball Cultural Center, where the SOC made her an honorary member in front of 500 guests including Jones’ parents, Richard and Elizabeth Jones.
Richard Jones received a standing ovation as he walked towards the stage to talk about his late daughter, who was killed on the set of the Gregg Allman biopic, ‘Midnight Rider,’ Feb. 20.
“I’m just representing Sarah,” he said. “I know she is looking down with a smile. Her enthusiasm is contagious and I hope it lives on.”
Hall and Oates’ “Sara Smile” provided the soundtrack to a touching tribute slideshow of her working on various sets such as “The Vampire Diaries.” Afterwards, SOC vice president and executive producer of the awards David Frederick urged attendees to sign a pledge for on-set safety at PledgeToSara.org.
Frederick, former SOC president Dan Kneece and SOC vice president Mark August presented Jones’ parents with an honorary membership certificate in front of another standing ovation. Both of Jones’ parents took to the stage to accept the award.
The tribute to Jones was the second one this weekend, following candlelight vigil and walk on Sunset Blvd. Friday night where nearly 1,000 local union members attended.
Camera technician Bill Coe received a lifetime achievement award and said that never having lived in Los Angeles makes the award even more special because he returns to the city and is surrounded by the best talent in the industry.
“The challenge is well worth the reward,” Coe said.
Jack Carpenter, who received accolades for his work as a mobile camera platform operator, recounted a story of a conversation he had with his daughter in his speech. When she asked him where he would put his award, he joked that he would have to build a new room for all of his trophies. He later admitted that he would put it on a shelf in his office.
Here is the complete list of Lifetime Achievement Award Winners:
President’s Award – Leonard Chapman
Camera Operator – Chris Haarhoff
Camera Technician – Bill Coe
Jack Carpenter – Mobile Camera Platform Operator
Barry Wetcher – Still Photographer
J Michael Muro – Historical Shot, “The Mighty Quinn”
Technical Achievement Award Winners:
Pictorvision – for the design and development of the Eclipse Aerial Camera System
Motion Picture Marine – for the design and development of Perfect Horizon Camera Stabilization Head
Camera Operators of the Year Winners:
Camera Operator of the Year – Feature Film
Peter Taylor, “Gravity”
Camera Operator of the Year – Television
Don Devine, “Mad Men”