From interview [KODAK, 2012]

[With camera/center] - "Arcadia Lost" [2008]

               

 PHEDON PAPAMICHAEL   ASC

Born: ? February 1962, Athens, Greece, as Phedon Papamichael Jr., son of art director/prod designer Phedon 'Poppa' Papamichael Sr.

Education: University of Munich [Fine Arts; graduated in 1982].

Career: 'When I was a high school student in Munich I first started having interest in cinematography. When I was 15 I bought a Super 8mm camera and started filming, making films and editing them. Later that format became very limited for me and I actually transitioned into still photography just because I could afford a professional camera. I felt like I could deliver some higher quality work with something that was affordable, so I bought my first Nikon and then I got very seriously into still photography [for magazines like 'Der Stern' and 'Paris Match'].' Went to New York in 1983. 'I shot a bunch of shorts for a group of friends. Of course, I wasn't getting paid. After a while we moved to Los Angeles and I began shooting medical videos once a week at UCLA for $100. I was making $400 a month; I paid $225 in rent and lived on the rest. I kept pretty busy. I tried to get into assisting cameramen just to make some money. I interviewed with Robby Müller for 'Barfly', Theo van de Sande for 'Miracle Mile' and also with Mikael Salomon. It was in 1987. I wasn't a first cameraman, so I didn't get any of those jobs. My cousin, Nick Cassavetes, whom I've actually collaborated with later on his first feature, told me to pick up 'Dramalogue', a newspaper where all these student films are advertised. I ended up shooting a UCLA graduate film. I had a reel with a lot of footage, but I hadn't made any money yet. Then I got my first job with Roger Corman. […] A friend who was a graduate of AFI got a second unit job directing on a picture called 'Deadly Dreams'. She asked if I wanted to shoot second unit with her. I was really fast because I was mostly shooting in natural light. They introduced me to director Katt Shea Ruben. We did three movies, almost in a row, 'Dance of The Damned', 'Stripped to Kill II' and 'Streets'. The great thing about Corman was that we had to shoot these features in 15 days. You shot for 16 to 18 hours a day with maybe 60 setups. It was just fantastic training; it was like a mini-studio system. Corman didn't really care as long as the movie had full frontal nudity and people were getting killed. […] Everybody always assumes that I went to AFI, because everybody I knew and was working with at Corman's place was either just out of AFI or still going there… Janusz Kaminski, Mauro Fiore, Wally Pfister and others. Janusz ended up gaffing for me on two or three Corman films and Mauro was my key grip. Janusz shot second unit on 'Streets' and then he got his own Corman movies.' [From interview by Bob Fisher on the 'MovieMaker Magazine' website.]

Founded the prod company Diaspora Films in 1996, and the lighting company Bella Luce Entertainment Lighting [with gaffer Rafael E. Sánchez] in 1999.

Ph commercials, e.g. for Cadillac, Renault & Audi [2003, 'The Other Side of the Road'; 6m] dir by Wim Wenders. Ph music videos, e.g. a: U2; d: Wim Wenders [2004]. Directed commercials.

Member of the ASC since 2000. Actor/dir John Cassavetes [1929-89] was his uncle.

Awards: Cork FF 'Best Black and White Cinematography' Award [1990] for 'Spud'; ASC Award nom [1993] for 'Wild Palms' [ep 'The Floating World']; ASC Award nom [1995] for 'White Dwarf'; Camerimage 'Golden Frog' nom [2000] & Avignon FF 'Kodak Prix Vision' [2000] for '27 Missing Kisses'; Camerimage 'Golden Frog' nom [2000] for 'The Million Dollar Hotel'; Camerimage 'Golden Frog' nom [2005] for 'Walk the Line'; American Hellenic Council 'Aristeio Award in the Arts and Entertainment' [2012]; ASC Film Award nom [2013], BAFTA Film Award nom [2013] & 'Oscar' AA nom [2013] for 'Nebraska'.

Website: Phedon Papamichael



 FILMS

1976

Cold Chicken [Phedon Papamichael Jr.] v/c; short/?m; with: John Cassavetes, Gena Rowlands & 'Poppa' Papamichael

19??

Distance [Greg Lalazarian] c; addph: Gustavo Brum; released 2003; on YouTube there's a 11m33s excerpt (or is it the complete film?)

1987

Spud [John Wentworth] b&w; short/?m

1987

Bukowski on Barfly [?] ?; doc/?m

1988

Deadly Dreams [Kristine Peterson] c; 2uc; ph: Zoran Hochstätter

1988

Dance of the Damned [Katt Shea Ruben] c

1988

Stripped to Kill II [: Live Girls] [Katt Shea Ruben] c; 2uc: Geza Sinkovics

1988

Nowhere to Run [Carl Franklin] c; 2uc: Igor Meglic

1989

After Midnight [Ken & Jim Wheat] c; 2uc: Eric Roy Anderson; pfx: Paul Gentry & William Conner

1989

Streets [Katt Shea] c; 2uc: Janusz Kaminski; pick-ups ph: Wally Pfister

1989

Body Chemistry [Kristine Peterson] c; 2uc: Wally Pfister

1990

Prayer of the Rollerboys [Rick King] c; addph: Wally Pfister

1990

Driving Me Crazy/Trabbi Goes to Hollywood/Autobahn [Jon Turteltaub] c; 2uc: Jeffrey Porter, Christopher Faloona & Flavio Labiano

1990

Love Crimes [Lizzie Borden] c; addph (Dallas); ph: Jack N. Green

1991

Poison Ivy [Katt Shea Ruben] c; 2uc (+ addph): Rodrigo García; sfx addph: L.A. McConnell (coordinator) & Michael Yeaman (technician)

1993

Cool Runnings [Jon Turteltaub] c; 2uc: Rexford Metz

1993

Stranger by Night/Justice Under Fire [Gregory H. Brown] b&w-c; 2uc (+ 2ud); ph: Wally Pfister

1993

Dark Side of Genius [Phedon Papamichael Jr.] c

1994

Unstrung Heroes [Diane Keaton] c

1994

While You Were Sleeping [Jon Turteltaub] c

1995

Critics and Other Freaks/Critic's Choice [Ernie Mirich] scheduled as doph, but replaced by Richard Crudo

1995

Bio-Dome [Jason Bloom] c; addph: Christopher Faloona; 2uc + miniature ph: Patrick Loungway; 'b' unit ph: Goran Pavicevic

1995

Décroche les étoiles/Unhook the Stars [Nick Cassavetes] c

1995

Phenomenon [Jon Turteltaub] p/c

1996

The Locusts/A Secret Sin [John Patrick Kelley] p/c

1997

Mouse Hunt [Gore Verbinski] c; 2uc: Mark Vargo; uncred add 2uc: Wally Pfister; vfx ph: Mark A. Shelton

1998

Patch Adams [Tom Shadyac] p/c

1998

Willie Nelson at the Teatro/Willie Nelson's Teatro [Wim Wenders] c; mus perf/60m

1998

Girl, Interrupted [James Mangold] scheduled as doph, but schedules were conflicting; ph by Jack N. Green in 1999

1999

The Million Dollar Hotel [Wim Wenders] p/c; addph: Wally Pfister

1999

27 Missing Kisses/Zapkhuli [Nana Dzhordzhadze] c; + add dir

2000

Viel passiert - Der BAP-Film/Ode to Cologne: A Rock 'n' Roll Film [Wim Wenders] c; mus doc/97m

2001

America's Sweethearts [Joe Roth] p/c; addph: Goran Pavicevic

2001

The Sky Is Green [Xan = Alexandra Cassavetes] announced as doph, but replaced by Jeff Cutter (filmed in 2003)

2001

Moonlight Mile [Brad Silberling] p/c

2001

Ten Minutes Older: The Trumpet [seg 'Twelve Miles to Trona' dir by Wim Wenders] s16-35bu/b&w-c; 7 seg + links; other ph: Fred Elmes, Timo Salminen, Ángel Luis Fernández, a.o.

2002

Identity [James Mangold] p/c; vfx superv: Robert Stromberg

2002

I Drink, I Gamble and I Write: The Making of Barfly [Cecilia Miniucchi] c/V; doc/12m

2002

Shattered Glass [Billy Ray] s35/c; addph; ph: Mandy Walker

2002

The Tears of Don Juan [Nana Dzhordzhadze] announced; status unknown

2002

Mathilde [Nina Mimica] c; 2uc: Mauro Faloni

2002

The Blackness in Magic/Robben Island [?] ?; doc/?m; in development; status unknown

2003

Who Killed the Idea? [Hermann Vaske] c; short/15m; made for BMW Films

2003

Sideways [Alexander Payne] c; addph: Jennifer Lane

2004

The Weather Man [Gore Verbinski] c

2004

Walk the Line [James Mangold] s35/c

2004

Lights 2 [Marcus Dillistone] c; ph closing scenes; ph: Ron Stannett (opening scenes), Sue Gibson (day-to-night transition) & Jack Cardiff (alleyway scenes); demo film for Fuji Eterna 500 film stock

2005

The Rainbowmaker [Nana Dzhordzhadze] shooting scheduled for May 2005; in pre-production in 2006 with cph Christopher Doyle; ph in April 2007 by Walther Vanden Ende

2005

The Pursuit of Happyness [Gabriele Muccino] s35/c; addph: Goran Pavicevic

[Left] with dir Brad Silberling - "10 Items or Less"

2006

10 Items or Less [Brad Silberling] c; 2uc: Goran Pavicevic

2006

3:10 to Yuma [James Mangold] s35 (+ D-Cinema)/c; 2uc: Mark Vargo

2008

W. [Oliver Stone] s35 (+ D-Cinema)/c

2008

Arcadia Lost [Phedon Papamichael] c

2009

Fujifilm Vivid Family - Eterna Vivid 160 - Eterna Vivid 500 [prod: Steven J. Wolfe, a.o.] s16+35mm/c; product demo; ph scenes #1-29 (8m39sec - incl titles); ph scenes #30-53 (8m39sec - incl titles): Kramer Morgenthau; ph scenes #54-68 (5m3sec - incl titles): Dion Beebe

2009

BioShock/Rapture [Gore Verbinski [later replaced by Juan Carlos Fresnadillo)] pre-production; after P. Papamichael prepped for 2 months, the film was put on hold; based on the X-Box game dir by Paul Hellquist (released in 2007)

2009

Knight & Day [James Mangold] s35 (+ D-Cinema)/c; 2uc: Josh Bleibtreu; aph: Hans Bjerno

"The Descendants"

2010

The Descendants [Alexander Payne] s35 (+ D-Cinema)/c; 2uc: Radan Popovic

2010

Jackpot [Lorna Davis] in development

2010

Stainless Steel [Lorna Davis] in development

2010

Breaking Waves [Paul Chart] c

2011

The Ides of March [George Clooney] s35 (+ D-Cinema)/c

2011

Maniac [Shia LaBeouf] HD/b&w; short/10m; inspired by the song 'Maniac' from Kid Cudi's album 'Man on the Moon II: The Legend of Mr. Rager'

2011

This Is Forty [Judd Apatow] HD (ARRI ALEXA)-to-35mm scope (+ D-Cinema)/c; 2uc: Goran Pavicevic; aph: Hans Bjerno

2012

Nebraska [Alexander Payne] HD (ARRI ALEXA M/p)-to-35mm scope (+ D-Cinema)/b&w; 2uc: Radan Popovic

2013

The Monuments Men [George Clooney] Hawk Scope+s35+HD (ARRI ALEXA Plus 4:3/Hawk Scope)-to-35mm scope (+ D-Cinema)/c; aph UK: Jeremy Braben


 TELEVISION & INTERNET

1992

Wild Palms [ep #1 'Everything Must Go' (90m) dir by Peter Hewitt, #2 'The Floating World' (45m) dir by Keith Gordon (KG), #3 'Rising Sons' (45m) dir by Kathryn Bigelow, #4 'Hungry Ghosts' (45m) dir by KG & #5 'Hello, I Must Be Going' (45m) dir by Phil Joanou] 2-part miniseries (6 ep), 1993

1994

White Dwarf [Peter Markle] tvm/60m (originally made as a pilot); 2uc: Christopher Faloona

1995

The Conversation [Dean Parisot] unsold pilot shown as tvm; remake of film (1972-73, Francis Ford Coppola; ph: Bill Butler & Haskell Wexler)

1999

Shelly Fisher [Paul Chart] tvm

2006

Men in Trees [pilot dir by James Mangold] 36-part series, 2006-08; other ph: David Geddes

2012

The Gamblers [pilot 'The Ledge' (7m06s) dir by Rick Heinrichs] ?-part interactive miniseries/HD; on location ph: Paula Huidobro; prod for the transmedia RIDES.tv platform


 MISCELLANEOUS

1984

The Boys Next Door [Penelope Spheeris] co-c.asst; ph: Arthur Albert

1987

Jogger [Robert Resnikoff; short] co-add c.asst; ph: John Hora


 FILMS & TELEVISION AS DIRECTOR

1976 Cold Chicken [+ ph] see Films
1991 Sketch Artist [tvm; + co-c.op] ph: Wally Pfister
1993 Dark Side of Genius [+ ph] see Films
2001 Americaville [feature] announced; status unknown

2007

From Within [feature] ph: Rafael E. Sánchez; 2nd cinematographer: Akis Konstantakopoulos

2007

Whirrrr [co-d: Sven Dagones; + co-scrpl] announced; status unknown

2008

Arcadia Lost [feature; + ph] see Films

"Lost Angeles"

2010

Lost Angeles/City of Jerks [feature; + co-prod] ph (RED+HD [Canon EOS 5D]): Tari Segal; filmed July-October 2010 & April 2011 (pickup shots)