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Tony Miller
Small Island, The Passion, Murphy’s Law, Zen, Killing Time



Working with a director, you have to start by listening. I try to avoid saying too much in the first meetings and try to get a strong sense of the director’s vision. Then I try and build on that vision and expand it visually. What is so exciting about working with directors is they are all different. The art of making films is so vast you have to collaborate, and it is these collaborations that make this job such a pleasure.

As a DP you are key in designing the look and making the visuals work on screen, but you do that with the input of many people, from your crew, the production designer, your gaffer and especially the director. You need a strong vision and you need to be decisive. You also need to be sensitive. Transposing those ideas on to the screen under pressure on the day often demands a shorthand with the director. But having said that, I did some of my best work with a director who I found very hard to understand.

The world has changed dramatically and continues to. I am currently very excited about shooting with older lenses and anamorphics and have just bought a set of Super Baltars that were used on the Godfather and a set of old Cooke S2 Panchros. The new digital sensors are so hard, finding lenses that give you new looks is now a major part of our art. I am just starting a BBC three-part mini series that is contemporary but we want it to have a period feel. So we are using the Cooke S2s.

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