LATIN HORROR has teamed up with Manhattan Edit Workshop’s to present episode XV of their ongoing series, “Sight, Sound& Story: Live,” a monthly online industry event series. This month it continues on October 28th with a focus on the imagery that makes us wet our undies, lose sleep at night and check under the bed, with the amazing cinematographers that make those eerie images become a reality via: “Sight, Sound & Story Live: “Behind the Lens: Capturing Horror Films.”
Horror films rely heavily on the cinematographer to create the tone, mood and surreal imagery that frighten us to our core. Just in time for Halloween, join us for a special conversation with Cinematographers James Kniest (“Annabelle,” “The Haunting of Bly Manor”), Toby Oliver, ACS (“Get Out,” “Insidious: The Last Key”) & Checco Varese, ASC (“Them: Covenant,” “It: Chapter Two”); as they discuss their creative process of capturing some of the most frightening scenes in filmmaking today. Acclaimed director, producer and author Jay Holben will guide the conversation; as well as show examples of their work. This is a free online event.
All attendees who register for this event will receive a link and password 30 minutes prior to the event. The event will be available at 5:00 PM EDT/ 2:00 PM PDT on October 28th. This will gain free access for all attendees who register.
About Our Panelists:
JAMES KNIEST is a seasoned cinematographer who has shot all manner of projects, including feature films, television series and commercials. Recently, Kniest shot four episodes of Netflix’s “The Haunting of Bly Manor,” created by Mike Flanagan, a previous collaborator. Before “The Haunting of Bly Manor,” Kniest lensed several episodes of the horror anthology series, “Into the Dark,” produced by Hulu and Blumhouse.
Productions. Each episode of “Into the Dark” is themed around a holiday specific to each month of the year, with Kniest shooting episodes themed around Saint Patrick’s Day, Christmas and Halloween.
Aside from “Annabelle,” Kniest has worked as the cinematographer on several horror feature films, including Stacy Title’s “The Bye Bye Man,” Phil Claydon’s “Within,” and Netflix’s “Hush,” directed by Mike Flanagan.
Along with feature films, Kniest filmed short films including “Hector: Lost Souls with Switchblades” and “The Hunted,” both directed by Jeff Compton, “Merry Widow,” by Tyler Jay and “Crossing Cords,” by Soren Garcia-Rey.
TOBY OLIVER, ACS, is an award-winning cinematographer whose career extends internationally from his native Australia. Most recently, Oliver shot Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo’s “Barb and Star go to Vista Del Mar,” which releases on premium video on demand February 12th. Oliver also lensed: “The Dirt”, Jeff Tremaine’s biopic film on hard rock band Mötley Crüe for Netflix; “Insidious: The Last Key” for director Adam Robitel; and writer/director Chris Landon’s comic thrillers “Happy Death Day” and “Happy Death Day 2U” for Universal.
He is best known for his work on Jordan Peele’s racially-charged comedic thriller horror “Get Out,” starring Allison Williams and Daniel Kaluuya. The film premiered at a midnight screening at the Sundance Film Festival, ranked #1 at the U.S. Box Office on its opening weekend, and went on to earn an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay and three other nominations including Best Picture.
Previously, Oliver shot Blumhouse Productions’ thriller “The Darkness” (aka “6 Miranda Drive”) for director Greg Mclean, starring Kevin Bacon and Radha Mitchell; and lensed indie fantasy drama “Wildling in New York” for Maven Pictures and director Fritz Bohm with Liv Tyler, Bel Powley and Brad Dourif.
Oliver’s work on the Australian WWI suspense war drama “Beneath Hill 60” earned him an Australian Film Institute Award, and the TV movie “Beaconsfield,” about a pair of miners trapped over a kilometer underground in a tiny cage, won a number of awards including an ACS Gold Award and the ACS Best in Show. He collected another ACS Gold Award for his vivid outback cinematography on Greg Mclean’s action-horror sequel “Wolf Creek 2,” which premiered at the Venice Film Festival, as well as an Australian Academy nod for TV movie “Carlotta”. He also worked extensively in mainland China, shooting the hit Chinese language rom-com “Waiting Alone” and the Australia/China co-production “33 Postcards,” starring Guy Pearce.
CHECCO VARESE, ASC, recently wrapped “Dopesick” with directors Barry Levinson, Michael Cuesta, Patricia Riggen and Danny Strong. Starring Michael Keaton, Rosario Dawson and Peter Saskgard, the series takes viewers to the epicenter of America’s struggle with opioid addiction.
Varese’s most recent work can be seen on Amazon Studios’ original, “Them: Covenant.” The notable horror anthology series, created by Little Marvin, centers around a black family who move to an all-white Los Angeles neighborhood in the 1950s during The Great Migration.
Previously, he shot “It: Chapter Two” for director Andy Muschietti, the sequel to 2017’s box office hit. The film aired at the Camerimage film festival. In addition, he has lensed the pilot for Fox’s legal drama “Proven Innocent”; the CW’s “Jane the Novela” pilot; several episodes of “Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan” for Amazon with John Krasinski starring in the titular role; and director Jeffrey Nachmanoff’s sci-fi thriller, Replicas, featuring Keanu Reeves and Thomas Middleditch.
Working with his longtime collaborator, director Patricia Riggen, Varese lensed “Miracles From Heaven,” as well as Riggen’s “The 33,” based on the extraordinary real-life story of 33 miners trapped in a Chilean mine. His other feature credits include Riggen’s “Girl in Progress” and second unit on Guillermo del Toro’s “Pacific Rim.”
Thanks to his prolific body of work, Varese has established a reputation as the unofficial ‘pilot guy.’ He has lensed nearly two dozen season starters which, more often than not, go on to be picked up to series: FX’s “The Strain”; A&E’s The Returned; ABC Family’s “The Fosters”; “Melrose Place” for the CW; and “The Defenders” for CBS. And who can forget the “True Blood” pilot, which led to a seven-season-long series.
JAY HOLBEN (panel moderator) is an independent director and producer in Los Angeles, California. His most recent work is the feature romantic drama “Before the Dawn.”
A former cinematographer, he is an author of two commercially-published books on cinematography, a contributing technical editor for American Cinematographer Magazine, faculty instructor for Global Cinematography Institute and international lecturer, an Associate Member of the ASC and the co-chair of the ASC Motion Imaging Technology Council Lens Committee.