The American Society of Cinematographers kicked off celebrations of its 100th anniversary on Jan. 8 with the official revelation of the ASC 100th Seal, which is being permanently installed in the courtyard of the organization’s historic Clubhouse in Hollywood.
Colonel Terry Virts, alongside ASC President Kees van Oostrum and ASC 100th Committee Chair Richard Crudo, unveiled the seal. Virts is a retired U.S. Air Force test pilot and NASA veteran of two spaceflights. While in space he took more than 300,000 photos that are an integral component of the National Geographic IMAX film “A Beautiful Planet,” which Virts also shot and stars in.
The ASC boasts five astronauts as honorary members: Col. Edwin E. Aldrin Jr., Neil A. Armstrong, Col. Michael Collins, Capt. Bruce McCandless and Dr. Ronald E. McNair.
Later, District 13 City Councilman Mitch O’Farrell dropped by the Clubhouse to present a resolution from the City of Los Angeles recognizing ASC’s longstanding contributions to advancing the art and craft of cinematography.
The evening wrapped with an audio message from Barbra Streisand, who received ASC’s Board of Governors Award in 2015. “Congratulations to the American Society of Cinematographers on celebrating your 100th year anniversary,” she said. “I’ve always considered myself extremely fortunate that the first time I stood in front of a motion picture camera, the great Harry Stradling was seated behind it. His understanding of how to film actors in a way that enhanced their performance, and how to blend shadows and light to paint pictures in the dark, was a thrilling revelation to me.”
The American Society of Cinematographers was chartered on January 8, 1919, in Hollywood, with the mission of advancing the art and science of cinematography.
As part of the festivities, the society released its members’ list of the 100 best shot films of all time. Organized by DP Steven Fierberg and voted on by ASC members, the roster is the first of its kind to showcase the best of cinematography as selected by professional directors of photography.
(Pictured above: Councilman Mitch O’Farrell, ASC president Kees van Oostrum, and ASC 100th Committee Chair Richard Crudo.)