The Team Deakins podcast is an ongoing conversation between acclaimed cinematographer Roger Deakins and James Deakins, his collaborator, about cinematography, the film business and whatever other questions are submitted. We start with a specific question and end....who knows where! We are joined by guests periodically. Followup questions can be posted in the forums at www.rogerdeakins.com.
Andrey Zvyagintsev & Mikhail Krichman (Pt 1) - Director and Cinematographer Team
EPISODE 65 - ANDREY ZVYAGINTSEV & MIKHAIL KRICHMAN - Director & Cinematographer Team - Part 1
Team Deakins have an amazing conversation with the Russian collaborative team of Andrey Zvyagintsev and Mikhail Krichman. We have been avid fans of their films for years and so this was very special to us. Their films are: The Return, The Banishment, Elena, Leviathon and Loveless. We speak about so many things that we had to make two episodes from the result! In this episode we learn about their unique collaborative process of 20 years, their experiences on The Return, The Banishment and Elena. We speak about VFX, how Andrey works with his actors and how they battle unpredictable elements, like children and weather. A great conversation with true masters of filmmaking!
RECOMMENDED EPISODE VIEWING: The Return, The Banishment, Elena, Leviathon, Loveless
Jon Kilik - Getting the project off the ground
EPISODE 64 - JON KILIK - Getting the project off the ground
Team Deakins is happy to welcome producer Jon Kilik back again with a specific subject - how to get film projects off the ground. Because films are different, we look at the different ways you can move forward. Jon tells us about the need to be flexible without compromising the vision, how often compromises can be opportunities, and if you can’t bring the film’s operating price down, you might have to wait and do a smaller project first. He also walks us through the process of finding distribution for a film. We talk about how to deal with a project that is financed from many sources and how to structure this. He also touches on the weight a name actor adds to a project, how the process of filmmaking is making the project better everyday and dealing with stress. We’re so glad that Jon came back and delved into this subject with us!
Turning the Tables - The Assassination of Jessse James
EPISODE 63 - TURNING THE TABLES - The Assassination of Jesse James
The tables get turned on Team Deakins in this episode with Greig Fraser asking us the questions, focusing on the film “The Assassination of Jesse James”. Greig asks questions on 7 clips of the film. There is a companion pdf with this episode (see the link below) that lists the approximate time these clips appear in the movie with images of the first and last frames. We get into specific breakdowns of these shots as well as talking about the experience of working with the director, the lyric nature of the book and how that influenced the film as well as the incredible music track from composer Nick Cave. Greig had done his homework and had plenty of questions for us! He led us through a great discussion of this film. Click here to download the companion pdf.
RECOMMEND EPISODE VIEWING: The Assassination of Jesse James
Dodd Vickers - Location Scout/Manager
EPISODE 62 - DODD VICKERS - Location Scout/Location Manager
Team Deakins again looks into the complexities of locations in the scheme of production. We talk with Dodd Vickers who shares with us how to find locations, things that have to be considered for locations and working with the budget. He also talks about how he needs to get into the director’s head, how the location department are the ambassadors of the film and the importance of getting to know the location neighborhood and the people living there. We also touch on reusing locations, remembering logistics when looking for locations and the difference in locations for film and TV. And much more!!
Jason Hall - Writer, Director
EPISODE 61 - JASON HALL - Writer, Director
Team Deakins has a great conversation in this episode with writer and director, Jason Hall. He takes us through the experience of writing the script for American Sniper. He literally had to wrestle for it! He talks about finding the story and dealing with the changes in the script during the course of find its way to the screen. He also walks us through the making of Thank You for Your Service, a movie that is a favorite of ours. We talked about how he approached it as a first time director and how he prepped for the movie. We learn about the casting of the movie and that he worked to surround the actors with things that resonate the truth. And the very important piece of advice that Taylor Hackford gave him during the editing period. He also talks about working with Spielberg, balancing commercial appeal with a meaningful story and the idea of directing a script he hasn’t written. We covered a lot of ground!
RECOMMENDED EPISODE VIEWING: Thank you for your Service
Billy O'Leary - Gaffer
EPISODE 60 - BILLY O’LEARY - Gaffer
Team Deakins sits down with frequent collaborator and friend, gaffer Billy O’Leary. It’s a wonderful walk down memory lane and we learned a lot too! He defines the role of gaffer and walks through what he does in prep and how he works with different DPs. He also talks about his love of NOT relying on big lights and working up lighting gags. He likes restrictions and having to think outside of the box. He talks about some specifics on Shawshank Redemption, Bladerunner 2049, Hudsucker Proxy, Barton Fink and Fargo. When asked what his gaffer’s nightmare is, he not only told us but let us know it was a waking nightmare - he did experience it! A fun and informative conversation that we think you’ll like!