EMMY NODS FOR PANAVISION SHOWS

UPDATED SEPTEMBER 13, 2011

Congratulations are in order for the Creative Arts Emmy winners, which were announced on Saturday, September 10 at the Nokia Theatre Live. Among the winners were two cinematographers lensing shows shot with Panavision cameras: in the Outstanding Cinematography for a Multi-Camera Series the winner was Steven V. Silver, ASC, director of photography on CBS’ “Two and a Half Men,” and the Outstanding Cinematography for a Single-Camera Series went to Jonathan Freeman, director of photography for HBO’s “Boardwalk Empire.”

Twice a year, cinematographers who shoot television are honored: the ASC nominations which are announced in January and culminate in an awards show in February, and the Emmy nominations, which were recently announced. The winners will be feted at the annual Creative Arts Emmys on Saturday, September 10, 2011.

Both shows are equally important for being recognized by their peers. When asked about his nomination, Stuart Dryburgh, ASC, said, “There is really nothing nicer than having one’s work recognized by the industry that one works in. I am, of course, delighted by my nomination for an Emmy!” Steven V.  Silver, ASC, nominated for his sixth Emmy (he won in 2007 “Two and a Half Men”), agreed. “It never gets old to receive recognition from your peers. In fact, that is the ultimate compliment. Who knows about our process and what we've gone through and, in the end, have achieved better than our peers?” he said. Chris La Fountaine, on his second nomination (and previous win for “How I Met Your Mother”), was happy to be nominated again. He admitted that “the first time I was nominated, I was really relaxed, because I knew I couldn’t possibly win. Then my name was called and panic set in. This time, I know anything is possible and I will have a speech ready just in case.” For Wayne Kennan, ASC, it’s been four years since his first Emmy nomination for “Rules of Engagement.” “In truth,” Kennan observed with amusement, “the only thing that is different is that we’re all a bit older and we’ve all lost some weight…some of us participate in our own ‘Biggest Loser’ contest during the production season!” Which can’t be easy, especially with the ever-present craft services table. As for Fred Murphy, ASC, his nomination for “The Good Wife,” now in its second season, “was great. To be recognized by your peers means you’re doing something good. Everybody on the set of ‘The Good Wife’ was excited about the Emmy nominations.” David “Moxy” Moxness, CSC, thought being nominated for an Emmy for “The Kennedys” was “an incredible honor. It is overwhelming, humbling and exciting to be recognized this way by my industry peers. This miniseries was almost never released, so I am very grateful that the hard work and talents of the entire cast and crew were so widely recognized.”

This year, several of the nominations were shows shot with Panavision cameras. In the category of “Outstanding Cinematography for a Multi-Camera Series,” La Fountaine garnered his second Emmy nomination for “How I Met Your Mother” (“Hopeless”), after being nominated in 2006 and winning the Primetime Emmy for the same show. “There were so many people who contributed to ‘How I Met Your Mother,’ that being nominated is a really nice way to recognize everyone’s vision,” he added. The show uses four Panavised Sony F900s, prepped out of Panavision Woodland Hills.  Kennan is nominated for “Rules of Engagement,” ("Uh Oh, It’s Magic”), which is his second nomination for the show, following a nomination in 2007. Kennan also shoots his series using four Panavised Sony F900s, prepped out of Woodland Hills. “We’re still using the same Sony F900 cameras we started with and we still approach lighting the show the same as when we shot the pilot, with some small refinements, of course,” noted Kennan. Silver earned his 6th nomination for “Two and a Half Men” (“Hookers, Hookers, Hookers”), having won in 2007 for the same show. Silver shoots his show on film using Panavision GIIs out of Woodland Hills. “As camera folks, we work very hard to shoot that perfect show. For me, that's where the technical camera work and visual artistry seamlessly usher the script throughout the story.”

For “Outstanding Cinematography for a Single-Camera Series,” four out of five of the nominated shows shot with Panavision equipment out of the New York office. “Boardwalk Empire” was shot on film with the Millennium XL and scored three nominations for three different cinematographers: Stuart Dryburgh, ASC, for the pilot, Jonathan Freeman, ASC, for “Home,” and Kramer Morgenthau, ASC for “A Return to Normalcy.” Asked about his work on the pilot, Dryburgh explained: “When we were finishing the color-timing of the pilot at Technicolor, colorist Martin Zeichner said that he thought we would stand a good chance of an Emmy nomination. And I had to agree, not out of any sort of self-aggrandizement, but by any objective standard the show was looking great. This was, in part, because we had lavished time and resources on the pilot for ‘Boardwalk Empire’ beyond what is usually available in television, even at HBO.” Freeman agreed with Dryburgh, adding that “Stuart set the bar very high. It was gorgeous work. Between that, beautiful production design and a great story, it was inspiring on a daily basis. We were very proud of the collective work by our crew in all departments.” For Fred Murphy, ASC, the second season of “The Good Wife” earned him his first Emmy nomination for “Double Jeopardy.” “We have a good time; it’s an easy-going, enjoyable set. Television is a lot of hours, it is long days. So, it’s great to work on a hit show.” “The Good Wife” is currently shooting with three Panavision Sony F35s prepped out of New York.

Jonathan Freeman, ASC Kramer Morgenthau, ASC Stuart Dryburgh, ASC

For Outstanding Cinematography for a Miniseries or Movie, two of the five were shot with Panavision cameras: “The Kennedys,” which prepped out of Panavision Toronto and was shot with Sony F35, and “Too Big to Fail,” which shipped from Panavision New York and was shot with Panavision XL2. Moxness who shot “The Kennedys,” garnered his first Emmy nomination, but has had multiple nominations and awards in the past, including his work on the series “Smallville.” As for choosing to shoot such a historical subject in digital, Moxness said, “the decision to shoot digitally was primarily a budget consideration. I certainly wanted to shoot film to retain what I felt would be the proper aesthetic and emotion for this historic piece. However, once that was deemed unavailable, after testing, we felt with the F35 we could achieve the look and feel we wanted for this project.” His nomination certainly attests to that. Kramer Morgenthau, ASC, is a dual Emmy nominee this year in two categories, which follows three previous Emmy nominations: “Flashforward,” (2009), “Life on Mars,” (2009), and “The Five People you Meet in Heaven” (2005).

In the reality show programming category, Zach Zamboni and Todd Liebler scored a nomination for “Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations,” for the Travel Channel. The show has recently begun shooting with Panavised F3s, prepped out of New York.