Rethink your visual palette and storytelling, with ideas from award-winning filmmakers.
Cinematographer Matthew Libatique (A Star is Born)
Academy Award® Nominee, Matthew Libatique (Black Swan, Iron Man, A Star is Born) is an American cinematographer. Matthew chats with Portbox about his workflow behind Black Swan, and A Star is Born, the two movies that earned him Oscar nominations. He also expands on his on-set color-workflow for Iron Man and Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey. Madhav inquires about Matthew's frequent collaborations with Spike Lee, Jon Favreau, and Darren Aronofsky — Matthew indulges and talks about his relationship with them.
Matthew also talks about the musical influences he's had on his career and reflects when Madhav asks about what kind of characters in the films Matty finds engaging. The two bond over road-trips, music, and international cinema. Towards the end of the episode, Matthew lays out guidelines international filmmakers can follow to advance their careers.
Academy Award Winner - Erik Messerschmidt
72nd Emmy Awards Nominee, Erik Messerschmidt (Mindhunter), is an American cinematographer. Erik chats with Portbox about his transition into cinematography with Netflix Original Series: Mindhunter. Madhav inquires about how Erik studies human behavior, both professionally and personally. Erik highlights how working with great cinematographers and highly disciplined directors has informed his workflow and why director-cinematographer relationships work across different films. He also breaks down one of Madhav's favorite scene from the second season of Mindhunter, while giving us details on his next project with David Fincher; Mank.
Lessons from How Anurag Kashyap Makes Movies
Anurag Kashyap (Dev.D, Gangs of Wasseypur, Ugly, Lust Stories) is an Indian director, writer, and producer. Anurag chats with Portbox about the importance of independent films and their rise in India during the early 2000s.
Madhav asks about the appeal of psychologically disturbed characters in Anurag's films and realism behind his dialogues. Anurag recounts the lessons he learned from when his movies did not get released early in his career. Additionally, the two talk about Anurag's management style and the expectations he has from his crew.
Taking accounts from his personal and professional life, Anurag takes us on a journey about his process, creating a community of artists, and creating a new-age movement in India. During this conversation, Madhav and Anurag bond over their love for Indian movies, yoga, and single-screen exhibitors (who are, to this date, a walking recitation of film history).
Director Vikramaditya Motwane — Global Influence of Indian Cinema
Vikramaditya Motwane (Udaan, Lootera, Sacred Games) is an Indian director, writer, and producer. Vikramaditya chats with Portbox about the global influence of Indian cinema while sharing notes from the beginning of his career. Madhav inquires about the inspiration behind Vikram's characters, and Vikram comments on the events that shaped independent films in Indian cinema. The two talk about the business of Indian cinema and how it has evolved over the years. Vikram highlights the importance of theatrical film releases and examines the future of independent cinema. They bond over the Mumbai vada-pavs, old Bollywood music, and their mutual heritage. This episode is a heavy-hitting cultural lesson.
Director Wally Pfister (Cinematographer, Inception)
Academy Award winner Wally Pfister (The Dark Knight Trilogy, Inception, Transcendence) is an American cinematographer, director, and musician. Wally chats with Portbox to discuss the preservation of art as an individual, and the origins of his cinematic career. Madhav asks about an artist's need to have control over one's craft, and Wally expands on his decision to become a director. The two talk about how this pandemic will change filmmaking, while Wally continues to share wisdom from his accumulated experiences in the industry. They bond over the love for music and Bob Dylan. On Wally's side, some rice gets overcooked, and later, he jams on his guitar while Madhav shuffles through the questions from the audience.
Madhav's partner, Bailey, also makes a brief appearance on this episode.
How Ben Kutchins Created Cinematic, Dark Realism in Ozark
Ben Kutchins (Ozark, Legion, Mozart in the Jungle) is an American, Emmy Award-nominated cinematographer. Ben chats with Portbox about his creative process and his approach to developing the visual language of Netflix's Ozark with Director Jason Bateman. Madhav wonders if the darker tone of a show can affect its critical success. Madhav and Ben discuss the distinction between 'the right image' and 'a good looking image.' Ben explains how character psychology influences his work as a cinematographer and puts further emphasis on the collaborative effort of filmmaking by saying, "we are all here for the story."
Must listen for filmmakers
I love portbox podcast. Every episode is special. As a working Cinematographer, I find it really useful to hear my peers talk about technical parts of their work as well as the more personal side of things. This is one of the key ways that I stay inspired. Beautiful! 10/10
I’ve listened to most of all the episodes and am loving these conversations. Maddy talks with each of the guests about their craft - directing, producing, cinematography, but it ends up being much more than that. A conversation about a craft that intertwined with a conversation about freedom and leadership.
Loving all the insights that are otherwise missed in interviews with cinematographers. Can’t stop listening