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FilmLight Announces First Jury Members for Colour Awards

15 June 2024 12:02 | Anonymous

Award-winning cinematographers Mandy Walker, Robert Richardson and Erik Messerschmidt amongst talented worldwide jury

FilmLight has announced the first set of high-profile creatives lined up to judge the 2024 FilmLight Colour Awards, including cinematographers Mandy Walker, Robert Richardson and Erik Messerschmidt. The awards are presented annually at the international film festival EnergaCAMERIMAGE in November.

Following her participation in the 2023 ceremony panel discussion with Lawrence Sher, first to join this year’s jury is Australian cinematographer, Mandy Walker, AM, ASC, ACS. Walker is best known for her work on Elvis (2022), Mulan (2020), Hidden Figures (2016), Tracks (2013), Australia (2008), Shattered Glass (2003), Australian Rules (2002), Lantana (2001),The Well (1997) and Parklands (1996).


“I really appreciate the artistry of great colourists,” comments Walker. “They help the cinematographer enhance the storytelling with colour, contrast, light and darkness – creating atmosphere and focusing the audiences’ gaze to what’s important in the frame. I will be looking for consistency and colour that is not too ‘affected’, but seamlessly works with and not against the elements of the story.” 

Also joining this year’s jury is renowned American cinematographer, Robert Richardson, ASC, ACK. Richardson, who has won the Academy Award for Best Cinematography three times, for his work on Hugo (2011), The Aviator (2004) and JFK (1991), is a regular collaborator of Hollywood directors like Oliver Stone, Quentin Tarantino and Martin Scorsese and known for his use of high contrast lighting, shapeshifting style, dynamic camera movements and keen eye for detail.

“Judging the work of a colourist is complex, as there are many factors that play a part,” says Richardson. “For example, how early was the colourist involved? Did they create a LUT to use in camera or during post? What was their relationship with the director of photography? What is their history? With this in mind, the process of judging for me will be based on the information they provide about the project as well as how well the visuals support the story. I am excited to take part, as the colourist is pivotal to my work and I have immense respect for the creativity involved.”

Also joining this year’s jury is cinematographer Erik Messerschmidt, ASC, who recently had two feature films premiere at the 2023 Venice Film Festival – David Fincher's The Killer and Michael Mann's Ferrari. He also shot Fincher’s series Mindhunter(2017-2019) and feature film Mank (2020).

FilmLight is also delighted to welcome the following talented creatives to the 2024 jury:

Yov Moor – senior freelance colourist in France, whose work encompasses award-winning feature films, documentaries, art films and shorts. In 2024, Moor had four films at Cannes: Miguel Gomes’Grand Tour, Gilles Lellouche’s L Amour Ouf (Beating Hearts), Keff’s Locust and Wei Liang Chiang’s Mongrel.

Natasha Leonnet – senior colourist at Picture Shop based in LA and recipient of numerous prestigious accolades. Leonnet’s work includes Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse (2023), Billie Eilish: Happier Ever (2021), Candyman (2020), Mulan (2020), First Man (2018), Hidden Figures (2016) and Whiplash (2014).

Mahak Gupta – senior colourist at Bridge PostWorks in India and a 2022 FilmLight Colour Awards ‘Spotlight’ nominee for her work on Shoebox (2021). Gupta is also the co-founder of ‘The Colorists Workshop’ development program designed to support and recognise aspiring colourists in India.

Elodie Ichter – senior colourist at Light Iron in New York, who recently completed the grade on Hulu’s Shōgun (2024). Born and raised in France, Ichter’s career path took her to London and Los Angeles before New York where she worked with renowned directors such as Martin Scorsese, Quentin Tarantino, Chloé Zhao and Ben Affleck.

Damien Vandercruyssen – senior colourist at Harbor, based in New York. Damien's expertise in cinematography and colour science have earned him regular collaborations with highly regarded directors such as Sofia Coppola, the Safdie brothers and Trey Edward Shults, along with leading cinematographers Philippe Le Sourd, Drew Daniel and Darius Khondji. His work on Apple TV+'s Lisey's Story (2021) won him the ‘TV/episodic’ award at the 2021 FilmLight Colour Awards. 

Ben Gervais – technical producer in Canada. Gervais is a pioneer in high frame rate and 3D workflows and developed 120fps production, post, distribution, and projection technology for Ang Lee's Gemini Man (2019) and Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk (2016).

Dirk Meier – freelance colourist and lecturer in Germany. Meier won the ‘Episodic’ award at the 2023 FilmLight Colour Awards for his work on season one of The Pimp: No F***ing Fairytale (OT: Luden). 

In 2024 colourists will be awarded across six categories: theatrical feature; television series/episodic; commercial; music video; Spotlight, which recognises colourists who have worked on a lower budget feature film or television movie; and, new for 2024, Emerging Talent, which celebrates the work of young colourists (age 18-35) in commercial and music video creation.

The remaining jury will be announced in the coming months with this year’s call for entries closing on 31 July. A shortlist will be announced in autumn and the winners unveiled at EnergaCAMERIMAGE in November. For more, visit: www.filmlightcolourawards.com.


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