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Camerimage Honors Murch, Powell, Stewart, Spotnitz, Menges

Camerimage, the International Film Festival of the Art of Cinematography, celebrates its 23rd edition with seven special awards for artists and technicians whom they identify as possessing a “unique visual sensitivity.” From Hollywood comes renowned editor and sound designer Walter Murch, whose diverse and award-winning credits include “The Conversation,” “Apocalypse Now” and “The English Patient,” as well as this year’s summer sci-fi fantasy “Tomorrowland.”

The U.K. is represented by costumer designer Sandy Powell and production designer Eve Stewart. Powell is no stranger to awards — her outfits for films such as “Shakespeare in Love,” “Gangs of New York,” “The Aviator” and “The Young Victoria” have brought regular invitations to the Oscar ceremony in the last 20 years. Similarly, Stewart’s period work with Mike Leigh, plus her collaborations with Tom Hooper for Oscar favorites “The King’s Speech” and “Les Misérables,” has brought multiple nominations as well as a BAFTA win for the latter.

Fanning out into the world of small-screen entertainment, Frank Spotnitz will receive the festival’s inaugural award for a television producer. The chief executive of Big Light Productions, Spotnitz has been involved in such popular U.S. TV shows as “The X Files,” “The Lone Gunmen” and “Millennium,” and recently created the high-profile Amazon Studios show “The Man in the High Castle,” a sci-fi drama based on the alternative history novel by Philip K. Dick.

The festival’s regular award for a unique director-cinematographer pairing this year brings Majid Majidi and Vittorio Storaro the Outstanding Cinematic Duo Award for their work on “Muhammad: The Messenger of God.” The first part of a planned trilogy that will tell the story of the Prophet Muhammad, the film presents his childhood years and aims to explain the roots of the Muslim religion.

Representing the field of documentary is Poland’s Marcel Lozinski, whose award for Outstanding Achievements in Documentary Filmmaking will put the Oscar-nominated director of “89mm from Europe” in the esteemed company of artists such as Kim Longinotto, Joan Churchill and Albert Maysles.

Finally, the Lifetime Achievement Award will go to veteran British cinematographer Chris Menges, whose career spans five decades, earning him Oscar recognition in the mid-1980s with his work on “The Mission” and “The Killing Fields,” and more recently with Holocaust drama “The Reader.” Both Lozinski and Menges will each be the subject of a retrospective and on hand to introduce a short season of their films.

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