One of the joys of the New York Film Festival is that for 18 days the greatest international filmmakers descend on Lincoln Center not only to share their most recent films, but to engage in a conversation about their work and career.
This year, two of the greatest living cinematographers, Vittorio Storaro and Ed Lachman, had films at the fest – “Wonder Wheel” and “Wonderstruck” – and for 90-minutes shared the stage with festival director Kent Jones to discuss the craft to which they’ve dedicated their lives. IndieWire has the exclusive video of the entire “Master Class” below.
Lachman has shot a number of the seminal American films of the last the 30 years, including Sofia Coppola’s “Virgin Suicides” and Steven Soderbergh’s “The Limey,” but it’s been his 15-year collaboration with director Todd Haynes (“Carol”) that has defined his career. Storaro is best know to American audiences for having shot the last three Woody Allen films, starting with “Cafe Society,” and Francis Ford Coppola’s classic “Apocalypse Now,” but it was his long-running collaboration with the great Italian director Bernardo Bertolucci (“1900,” “Last Tango in Paris”) that established him as one of the top cinematographers working in the ’70s.
During the discussion, Lachman shared how Bertolucci first brought the two cameraman together 40 years ago. Lachman had written his university thesis on “Before the Revolution,” Bertolucci’s second film, which Storaro was the camera assistant on, and later would serve as the “standby DP” on Bertolucci’s “Luna,” to help Storaro — who wasn’t in the union — circumvent guild regulations. The admiration between the two great artists was evident throughout the evening.
“[Vittorio] has done more in the last 50 years for the recognition and esteem cinematography [than] anybody,” Lachman said about his friend.
During their conversation, the two DPs shared clips from their films, including “The Conformist” and “Far From Heaven,” both of which IndieWire recently named as two of the 12 movies with the best color cinematography of all time. They also engaged in a spirited debate about the difference between shooting digital versus film, sparked by Storaro having recently switched to video in his collaborations with Allen.
Watch the entire NYFF Master Class Below: