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ASC Awards 2018: Roger Deakins Takes Top Cinematography Prize for ‘Blade Runner 2049’

The acclaimed cinematographer won his fourth ASC award. Can he finally win the elusive Oscar for his trippy, sci-fi naturalism?

Blade Runner 2049

“Blade Runner 2049”

Warner Bros.


As expected, cinematographer Roger Deakins took the top prize for “Blade Runner 2049” at the 32nd annual ASC Awards at Hollywood & Highland. It was his fourth ASC award, besting the other four Oscar nominees: Bruno Delbonnel (“Darkest Hour”), Hoyte van Hoytema (“Dunkirk”), Dan Laustsen (“The Shape of Water”), and Rachel Morrison (“Mudbound”), the first female from her branch nominated by the ASC and the Academy.

But can Deakins finally earn the elusive Academy Award after 14 nominations? He’s certainly the sentimental favorite for his trippy, sci-fi naturalism in Denis Villeneuve’s “Blade Runner” sequel. And winning the BAFTA Sunday (also his fourth) would certainly provide added momentum.

“The Crown”

But there’s also a case to be made for three of the other contenders: Van Hoytema’s innovative IMAX work for Christopher Nolan’s World War II survival epic, Lausten’s sublime imagery for Guillermo del Toro’s Best Picture favorite, and Morrison’s poetic work for Dee Rees’ “Mudbound.” Although the dark horse, she clearly has buzz from both her historic nomination (benefiting from the Academy’s long-overdue diversity program) and her great work on Ryan Coogler’s zeitgeist-grabbing “Black Panther.”

Meanwhile, Mart Taniel won the Spotlight Award for the psychological thriller “November” (Estonia’s foreign language Oscar entry); Adriano Goldman took the episodic non-commercial series award for “The Crown” (“Smoke and Mirrors”); Boris Mojsovski earned the episodic commercial series award for “Twelve Monkeys” (“Thief”); and Mathias Herndl captured the miniseries award for “Genius” (“Einstein: Chapter 1”).

Angelina JolieAngelina Jolie in Cambodia, Phnom Penh - 18 Feb 2017US director-actress Angelina Jolie arrives for a press conference at a hotel in Siem Reap province, Cambodia, 18 February 2017. Angelina Jolie will give a free public screening of her new film 'First They Killed My Father' about the war time experiences of Cambodian Loung Un as a young child in Cambodia. The movie is to be released on the Internet TV network Netflix.

Angelina Jolie


Special honors went to actress-director Angelina Jolie, who took the Board of Governors Award; Russell Carpenter (the Oscar-winning “Titanic”) won the Lifetime Achievement Award; Alan Caso (“Six Feet Under”) earned the Career Achievement in Television Award; Russell Boyd (the Oscar-winning “Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World”) won the International Award; Stephen Lighthill (“Gimme Shelter”) grabbed the Presidents Award; and Frieder Hochheim, president and founder of Kino Flo Lighting Systems, earned the Bud Stone Award of Distinction.

Jolie (“First They Killed My Father”) summed up the emphasis on diversity and inclusion in many of the acceptance speeches: “I am grateful that I’ve never been made to feel like a female director, but my job is to be a good director. I’m very excited there are more women making their mark in cinematography and being recognized for it. I am hopeful that in our lifetime we will be able to see the rise of more women…that surge of light that has been held back for far too long.”

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