×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Elswit tops ASC Awards with ‘Blood’

Cinematographer wins feature honor

Robert Elswit staved off a tough field Saturday night at the American Society of Cinematographers awards ceremony when he topped the feature competition for his work on Paul Thomas Anderson’s “There Will Be Blood.”

“I just think it’s impossible to pick these five films apart from one another,” said Elswit, who has shot all of Anderson’s movies dating back to the filmmaker’s 1996 feature debut “Hard Eight.” “I’m really lucky that Janusz (Kaminki) did extraordinary work a year after he resigned from the ASC, and that Roger (Deakins) is competing with himself. To avoid this (from happening again) there should probably be a category called ‘best cinematography in a movie by Roger Deakins.”

As Elswit suggested, it’s anybody’s guess as to whether Deakins’ two noms, for “No Country for Old Men” and “The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford,” might have split the vote in Deakins’ disfavor. With the ASC’s nominees in perfect alignment with those of the Academy for only the second time in the ASC’s 22 years of bestowing awards, one might view Elswit’s ASC win as an Oscar bellwether. But given that the ASC’s 298 members only represent a fraction of the Acad’s 6,500-plus strong who are eligible to vote for Oscar’s winning cinematographer, it’s more like comparing apples and oranges.

The last time the two organizations matched noms, John Seale won both contests for “The English Patient,” a film with which this year’s “Atonement” — shot by ASC and Oscar nominee Seamus McGarvey — has been often compared.

Like that of Deakins, Elswit’s skill is evident in more than one film released this year; he also shot “Michael Clayton,” whose star, George Clooney, worked with Elswit on “Good Night, and Good Luck.”

Others taking home awards from the Hollywood and Highland Grand Ballroom included Aussie d.p. Ben Nott, who won in the movie/miniseries/pilot category for TNT’s “The Company”; and Glen Winter, who aced the episodic TV award for “Noir,” an episode of CW’s “Smallville.”

As is the case every year, honorary awards dominated the evening, with Annette Bening being given the Board of Governors Award; Stephen Burum, a frequent collaborator with Brian De Palma, accepting the org’s Lifetime Achievement Award; Brit lenser Walter Lassally (“Tom Jones,” “A Taste of Honey”) being honored with the International Award; George Spiro Dibie awarded the Career Achievement in Television kudo; and visual effects wizard Richard Edlund accepting the Presidents Award.

More Film

  • Critics Week

    Cannes Critics’ Week Unveils Its Lineup

    Lorcan Finnegan’s science-fiction thriller “Vivarium” with Jesse Eisenberg and Imogen Poots, Jérémy Clapin’s fantasy-filled animated feature “I Lost My Body,” and Hlynur Pálmason’s Icelandic drama “A White, White Day” are among the 11 films set to compete at Critics’ Week, the section dedicated to first and second films that runs parallel with the Cannes Film [...]

  • China Box Office: 'Wonder Park' Fails

    China Box Office: 'Wonder Park' Fails to Impress While 'P Storm' Rages On

    Even on one of the quietest weekends of the year, new U.S. animated release “Wonder Park” failed to inspire Chinese audiences as much as Hong Kong and Indian movies already in their third weekend in theaters. Starring the voice talents of Matthew Broderick, Jennifer Garner, Mila Kunis, and Ken Jeong, among many others, the film [...]

  • David Picker dead

    David Picker, Studio Chief Who Acquired James Bond Novels for UA, Dies at 87

    David Picker, who headed United Artists, Paramount and Columbia’s motion picture divisions and was known for forging relationships with groundbreaking filmmakers and material, died Saturday in New York. He was 87 and had been suffering from colon cancer. MGM tweeted, “We are saddened to hear that a member of the United Artists family has passed [...]

  • Abigail Disney on Bob Iger

    Abigail Disney Calls Bob Iger's $65 Million Compensation 'Insane'

    Disney chairman-CEO Bob Iger’s total compensation for Disney’s fiscal 2018 was a whopping $65.6 million. Abigail Disney, the granddaughter of Disney co-founder Roy Disney, calls that sum “insane.”  While speaking at the Fast Company Impact Council, the filmmaker and philanthropist insisted that this level of corporate payout has a “corrosive effect on society.” Disney took [...]

  • 'Curse of La Llorona' Tops International

    'Curse of La Llorona' Tops International Box Office With $30 Million

    Warner Bros. and New Line’s “The Curse of La Llorona” led the way at the international box office, summoning $30 million when it opened in 71 foreign markets. The supernatural thriller collected $26.5 million in North America for a global start of $56.5 million. “La Llorona,” based on the Mexican folklore about the Weeping Woman, [...]

  • Box Office: 'Curse of La Llorona'

    Box Office: 'Curse of La Llorona' Wins Worst Easter Weekend in Over a Decade

    Warner Bros. and New Line’s “The Curse of La Llorona” ascended to the top of domestic box office charts, conjuring $26.5 million when it opened in 3,372 North American theaters. “La Llorona” is the latest horror movie to outperform expectations, further cementing the genre as one of the most reliable box office draws. Even so, [...]

  • FX's 'Snowfall' Panel TCA Winter Press

    John Singleton Hospitalized After Suffering Stroke

    UPDATED with statements from John Singleton’s family and FX Networks John Singleton, the Oscar nominated director and writer of “Boyz N’ the Hood,” has suffered a stroke. Sources confirm to Variety that Singleton checked himself into the hospital earlier this week after experiencing pain in his leg. The stroke has been characterized by doctors as [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content