#1: From interview by DP/30

#2: From interview [KODAK, 2012]

#3: [Right] with dir Steven Spielberg - "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" [2007]

 

   


JANUSZ KAMINSKI

 

Born: 27 June 1959, Ziebice, Poland, as Janusz Zygmunt Kaminski. Came to the USA in 1981.

Education: Film School of Columbia College [CC], Chicago [1982-87; BA Film in 1987; classmate of Mauro Fiore]; American Film Institute, Los Angeles [graduated in 1987].

Career: Started shooting low budget exploitation films.

His association with Steven Spielberg began after the 1991 airing of 'Wildflower', a tvm he ph for Diane Keaton. Spielberg hired him to shoot the tv prod 'Class of '61'.

Ph commercials dir by Scott Hicks, a.o.

Directed commercials for Visa, Minolta, a.o.

Became member of the ASC in 1994, but resigned in 2006.

Was married to actress Holly Hunter [1995-01]. Married [2004-] to prod Rebecca Rankin.

Appeared in the doc's 'The Making of 'Lost World' [1997, Laurent Bouzereau; 53m], 'Holly Hunter: Southern Comfort With a Hollywood Twist' [2000, prod: Chris Mortensen; ph: Peter Krajewski, a.o.; ep of tv-series 'Intimate Portrait' for Lifetime-tv], 'Lighting AI' [2002, Laurent Bouzereau; 4m] and 'Catch Me If You Can: Behind the Camera' [2003, Laurent Bouzereau; ph: Ron Siegel; 17m].

Awards: 'Oscar' AA [1994], NYFCC Award [1993], BSC Award [1993], LAFCA Award [1993], CFCA Award [1994], BAFTA Film Award [1994], BSFC Award [1993] & ASC Award nom [1994] for 'Schindler's List'; 'Oscar' AA nom [1998] & ASC Award nom[1998] for 'Amistad'; 'Oscar' AA [1999], LAFCA Award [1998], BSFC Award [1998], ASC Award nom [1999], BSC Award nom [1999], Camerimage 'Golden Frog' nom [1998], CFCA Award nom [1999], Palm Springs IFF 'Da Vinci' Award [2000; shared] & BAFTA Film Award nom [1999] for 'Saving Private Ryan'; Camerimage 'Atlas' Award for the Promotion of Polish Culture Abroad [2002]; American Film Institute Award nom [2002] & CFCA Award nom [2002] for 'Artificial Intelligence'; CFCA Award nom [2003] & Golden Satellite Award nom [2003] for 'Minority Report'; Cannes IFF 'Vulcan Prize' [2007], Plus Camerimage 'Golden Frog' Award [2007], 'Oscar' AA nom [2007] & Independent Spirit Award [2008] for 'Le scaphandre et le papillon/The Diving Bell and the Butterfly'; BAFTA Film Award nom [2011] for 'War Horse'; ASC Film Award nom [2012] & 'Oscar' AA nom [2012] for 'Lincoln'; ASC Film Award nom [2015] for 'Bridge of Spies'.


'Saving Private Ryan' [1997]: 'Kaminski's collaboration with Spielberg included discovering different visual textures with an imaginative mix of camera films, lab processes and specialized techniques, such as 'deconstruction of the slickness that you usually get with modern lenses' - in Spielberg's words. Lenses in 1940 were technically inferior to today's, so Kaminski had a set of older Ultra-Speeds stripped of their protective coatings to emulate the look of 50 years ago. He also flashed the film and used the Technicolor ENR process to alter contrast. "Interestingly, when we analyzed the lenses, the focus and sharpness didn't change very much, though there was some deterioration; what really changed was the contrast and color rendering. The contrast became much flatter. Without the coatings, the light enters the lens and bounces all around, so the images become kind of foggy but still sharp. Also, it's much easier to get flares, which automatically diffuses the light and the colors to a degree and lends a little haze to the image." Kaminski would often mismatch the lenses if he had two cameras running, using one with coated Ultra-Speeds and one with stripped lenses. That lent a certain lack of continuity in picture quality, suggesting an appropriate disjointedness.

Kaminski and his crew shot many feet of film with the camera shutter set at 45 or 90 degrees, a technique that was especially effective in filming explosions. Every particle of blasted sand seems to be visible. The idea, which was born in pre-production testing, helped to create a sense of reality and urgency.

Another technique was borrowed from cinematographer Douglas Milsome, who also used it in an epic war film, Stanley Kubrick's 'Full Metal Jacket'. The camera's shutter is thrown out of sync to create a streaking effect from the top of the frame to the bottom. It's another way to enhance realism by giving the images the less-than-perfectly controlled look of actual battle footage.' [From the International Cinematographers Guild website.]


 

 FILMS

1985

Unexcused Absence [Mark Pavia] 16mm/c; short/30m

1985

Drowning [Juan Carlos Valdivia] 16mm/c; short/30m; prod CC

1986

Lisa [Karen Erbach] c; short/28m; + co-prod/co-ed; prod CC

1986

Lady America [Nick Gaitatjis] b&w; short/52m

1987

Transients/En transit [Juan Carlos Valdivia] 16mm/c; short/31m; prod CC

1988

Emma [Andrea Kampic] 16mm/c; short/30m

1988

Selling Short [?] ?

1988

Grim Prairie Tales/Hellbent [Wayne Coe] c; 4 seg

1989

Streets [Katt Shea Ruben] c; 2uc; ph: Phedon Papamichael

1989

Watchers II [Thierry Notz] c; 2uc; ph: Edward Pei

1989

All the Love in the World [Daniel Curran] 16mm-35bu/b&w; 2uc (+ gaffer): Mauro Fiore

1990

The Rain Killer [Ken Stein] c; 2uc: Flavio M. Labiano

1990

To Die Standing/Crackdown [Louis Morneau] c; addph; ph: Pili Flores-Guerra

1990

The Terror Within II [Andrew Stevens] c; addph: Jim Mathers; 2uc: Mauro Fiore

1990

The Unborn [Rodman Flender] c; 2uc; ph: Wally Pfister

1990

Pyrates [Noah Stern] c

1990

One False Move [Carl Franklin] c; 2uc; ph: James L. Carter

1991

Star Time [Alexander Cassini] c; co-addph; ph: Fernando Arguelles

1991

vanilla ICE - cool as ICE [David Kellogg] c

1991

Mad Dog Coll/Killer Instinct [Greydon Clark & Ken Stein] c/V; uncred addph (?): Nicholas Josef von Sternberg; filmed in Russia

1991

Killer Instinct/Homicidal Impulse [David Tausik] c; as Jennifer Stoltz

1992

Trouble Bound [Jeffrey Reiner] c; 2uc Arizona: Mauro Fiore; addph: Jan Kiesser

1992

The Adventures of Huck Finn [Stephen Sommers] c

1993

Schindler's List [Steven Spielberg] b&w-c

1993

Tall Tale [- The Unbelievable Adventures of Pecos Bill] [Jeremiah Chechik] p/c; blue screen unit ph: Don Baker; vfx ph: David Hardberger & Les Bernstein

1994

Little Giants [Duwayne Dunham] c; 2uc: Rexford Metz

1994

The Scarlet Letter [Roland Joffé] scheduled as ph, but replaced by Alex Thomson

1994

How to Make an American Quilt [Jocelyn Moorhouse] c; 2uc: Lawrence Blanford; addph 2u: Chuck Cohen; filmed 1994-95

1995

Sangre [Belita Moreno] ?; short/15m

1996

Jerry Maguire [Cameron Crowe] c; 2uc: Chuck Cohen

1996

The Lost World: Jurassic Park [Steven Spielberg] 35mm (+ 70bu)/c; uncred 2uc: Mauro Fiore; vfx ph: Pat Turner; miniature unit ph: Eric Swenson

1997

Amistad [Steven Spielberg] c; uncred 2uc: Mauro Fiore

1997

Saving Private Ryan [Steven Spielberg] c; see above

1998

Armageddon [Michael Bay] p35mm-70bu/c; uncred addph (Shanghai destruction; filmed 1998); ph: John Schwartzman

2000

A.I. Artificial Intelligence [Steven Spielberg] c; 2uc: Irek Hartowicz

2001

Minority Report [Steven Spielberg] s35/c; vfx ph: Vance Piper; aph: Larry Blanford & David B. Nowell; uwph: Pete Romano

 

[Left] with Leonardo DiCaprio - "Catch Me If You Can"

 

2002

Catch Me If You Can [Steven Spielberg] c

2003

Jumbo Girl [Daniel Curran] c; short/30m; addph: Mauro Fiore

2003

The Terminal [Steven Spielberg] c

2004

War of the Worlds [Steven Spielberg] c; 2uc: David Devlin; vfx ph: Kim Marks & Martin Rosenberg

2005

Munich [Steven Spielberg] s35/c; addph: Jarred Land

2006

Le scaphandre et le papillon/The Diving Bell and the Butterfly [Julian Schnabel] c; uwph: Pascal Morisset, Michel Revest & Roland Savoye

2006

Mission Zero [Kathryn Bigelow] s35/c; comm short/9m; premiered on internet (2007); for Pirelli Tires

 

[Left] with c.asst Henryk Jedynak [right] - "Hania"

 

2006

Hania [Janusz Kaminski] c; addph: Piotr Redlinski; filmed in Poland (4 December 2006 - 27 January 2007)

 

[White shirt] with dir Steven Spielberg [right]

"Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull"

 

2007

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull [Steven Spielberg] p/c; 2uc: Flavio M. Labiano & (uncred) Irek Hartowicz; aph: Reed Smoot

2007

Interstellar [Steven Spielberg] announced as doph, but ph by Hoyte van Hoytema and dir by Christopher Nolan in 2013

2008

The Trial of the Chicago 7 [? (replaced Paul Greengrass)] pre-production

2008

Funny People [Judd Apatow] 35mm (+ D-Cinema)/c; filmed 2008-09

2009

How Do You Know [James L. Brooks] 35mm (+ D-Cinema)/c; 2uc: Goran Pavicevic

2010

War Horse [Steven Spielberg] s35 (+ D-Cinema)/b&w-c; uncred 2uc: David Devlin (+ gaffer) & Simon Baker (+ c.op 'c' cam)

2011

Lincoln [Steven Spielberg] s35 (+ D-Cinema)/c

2012

Broken Night [Guillermo Arriaga] HD (Nikon D800)/c; short/10m; c.op 'c' cam: Paula Huidobro

2013

The Judge [David Dobkin] s35 (+ D-Cinema)/c; 2uc: Bill Trautvetter; addph: Thierry Labbe & Erick Garibay; aph: Steve Koster

2013

Indiana Jones 5 [Steven Spielberg] announced

2014

The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara [Steven Spielberg] pre-production

2014

Bridge of Spies/St. James Place [Steven Spielberg] Hawk Scope (+ D-Cinema)/b&w-c; addph: Bartosz Nalazek

2015

The BFG [Steven Spielberg] HD (ARRI ALEXA XT/p)-to-D-Cinema (also 3-D version)/c; concept unit ph: Steven Hall; aph: Adam Dale

2016

Ready Player One [Steven Spielberg] s35/c; chase unit ph: Fraser Taggart; aph: Jeremy Braben

 

 TELEVISION

1991

Wildflower [Diane Keaton] tvm

1992

Class of '61 [Gregory Hoblit] tvm

1993

Love, Cheat & Steal [William Curran] tvm; co-addph; ph: Kent Wakeford

2010

Write the Future [Alejandro González Iñárritu] RED (scope)/c; commercial/3m; guest cinematographer; ph: Emmanuel Lubezki; for Nike (premiered during the FIFA World Cup 2010)

 

 MISCELLANEOUS

1985

Nothing in Common [Garry Marshall] intern; ph: John Alonzo

1987

Not of This Earth [Jim Wynorski] gaffer; ph: Zoran Hochstätter

1988

Dance of the Damned [Katt Shea Ruben] gaffer; ph: Phedon Papamichael

1988

Saturday the 14th Strikes Back [Howard R. Cohen] gaffer; ph: Levie Isaacks

1988

Stripped to Kill II [: Live Girls] [Katt Shea] gaffer; ph: Phedon Papamichael

1989

After Midnight [Jim & Ken Wheat] gaffer; ph: Phedon Papamichael

2006

The Sunday Man [Danielle Shamash; short/15m] set photographer; ph: Art Meyerhoff; prod AFI (Directing Workshop for Women)

2009

The Adventures of Tintin [: The Secret of the Unicorn] [Steven Spielberg] p+HD-to-35mm scope (+ D-Cinema [also 3-D version])/c; anim/107m; uncred consultant

 

 FILMS, TELEVISION & INTERNET AS DIRECTOR

 

With actress Winona Ryder - "Lost Souls"

 

1998

Lost Souls [feature] ph: Mauro Fiore

2003

Fields of Fire [project]

2006

A Woman of No Importance [pre-production]

2006

Mama Masai [in development]

2006

The Night Witch/White Rose [announced]

2006

Hania [feature; + ph] see Films

2010

The Event [ep #15 'Face Off'] 22-part tv-series, 2010-11; ph (HD [Genesis]): Feliks Parnell

2011

American Dream [feature; + story/co-exec prod] ph: Keith Dunkerley

2013

Making a Scene [RED Epic/c; short/10m/11 seg] ph: Bartosz Nalazek; for The New York Times Magazine (internet)

2014

The Divide [ep #4 'Never Forget'] 8-part tv-series, 2014; ph (HD): Bob Aschmann

2015

The Postcard Killings [feature; replaced Everado Gout] pre-production