×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Mandy Walker

Kodak Vision Award

When staffing national-identity saga “Australia,” it stands to reason that director Baz Luhrmann would select a dream team of Down Under talent, from Hugh Jackman and Nicole Kidman (playing British) to below-the-line pros like cinematographer Mandy Walker. Walker has since relocated to Los Angeles (thereby avoiding the 24-hour flights required whenever she was called to shoot a commercial in some exotic corner of the northern hemisphere), but the Melbourne-born d.p. is still very much an Aussie at heart.

It was on one globe-trotting adventure that she met Luhrmann and Kidman while shooting a Chanel No. 5 ad spot the pair were working on. As both a homecoming and reunion, “Australia” also marks the largest film on which Walker has ever worked, a project designed to rival the grandeur of epics like “Lawrence of Arabia.”

“Baz wanted to grab what was on location, but then have control on stage, in the style of how they made films like ‘Gone With the Wind,’ but we took a modern approach where we used bluescreen and CGI composites,” Walker explains. “He called it the ‘Lucas-Lean.’ We’d go and get the David Lean part (on location) and then go onstage and do the George Lucas.”

For inspiration, Walker rewatched such national classics as “The Overlanders,” adding her own creative input to Luhrmann’s vision.

“On set, Baz is sort of like a conductor,” she says. “Technicians who are used to just going from A to B are now working on a different level. He draws that out of people, and they love it. I suppose working like that brings the best out of me.”

More Film

  • '2019 Oscar Nominated Short Films: Live

    Film Review: ‘2019 Oscar Nominated Short Films: Live Action’

    The Academy skewed dark in its choice of live-action shorts this year, selecting four films to slit your wrists by — each one featuring child endangerment in a different form — and a fifth, about a diabetic on her death bed, that finds a glimmer of uplift at the other end of life. If that [...]

  • How the 'Rich Eisen Show' Mixes

    How the 'Rich Eisen Show' Mixes Sports and Showbiz in an Entertaining Mix

    Walking through the El Segundo studio where veteran sportscaster Rich Eisen tapes his daily “Rich Eisen Show,” the sheer density of sports memorabilia is overwhelming — everything from game balls to jerseys, gear, autographs and uncountable photos are crammed onto every inch of wall and desk space. But step into Eisen’s dressing room, and the [...]

  • Yorgos Lanthimos

    Film News Roundup: 'The Favourite' Director Yorgos Lanthimos Boards Crime Drama

    In today’s film news roundup, Yorgos Lanthimos has set up a crime drama, “Here Lies Daniel Tate” is being adapted, and Donna Langley becomes a member of the USC film school board. DIRECTOR HIRED “The Favourite” producer-director Yorgos Lanthimos has signed on to write and direct crime drama “Pop. 1280,” an adaptation of Jim Thompson’s [...]

  • Brody Stevens Dead

    Comedian Brody Stevens Dies at 48

    Prominent Los Angeles comedian Brody Stevens died Friday in Los Angeles, Variety has confirmed. He was 48. “Brody was an inspiring voice who was a friend to many in the comedy community,” Stevens’ reps said in a statement. “He pushed creative boundaries and his passion for his work and his love of baseball were contagious. [...]

  • Contract Placeholder Business

    Hollywood Agents Blast Writers Guild Over New Proposals

    The war between the Writers Guild of America and Hollywood agents has escalated as the two sides battle over the rules on how writers are represented. The latest volley emerged Friday from Karen Stuart, executive director of the Association of Talent Agents, who accused WGA leaders of misleading its members and asserted that the guild [...]

  • Xavier Legrand Custody

    Cesar Awards: Xavier Legrand’s ‘Custody’ Wins Best Film

    Xavier Legrand’s feature debut “Custody,” a tense portrait of a family torn by domestic violence, won best film, actress (for Lea Drucker), and original screenplay at the 44th Cesar Awards, which took place at the Salle Pleyel in Paris. The awards are France’s highest film honors. “Custody,” which marks Legrand’s follow up to his Oscar-nominated [...]

  • Editorial use only. No book cover

    'Crazy Rich Asians,' 'Late Show With Stephen Colbert' Win Publicity Campaign Awards

    Hollywood publicists have selected “Crazy Rich Asians” as the top movie publicity campaign for 2018 and “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” as the best television campaign. Warner Bros.’ “Crazy Rich Asians” topped the campaigns for Disney’s “Black Panther,” Fox’s “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Paramount’s “A Quiet Place,” Sony’s “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” and Universal’s “Halloween” for [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content