SOC Names Robert Gorelick Camera Operator of the Year 

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Sun, 03/08/2009 - 20:00 -- Nick Dager

The Society of Camera Operators has named Roberrt Gorelick (The Dark Knight) as Camera Operator of the Year. Upon receiving the award Gorelick said “This is the first award I've ever won except for a bowling trophy.” The Camera Operator of the Year award is nominated and voted on by the membership of the Society and the winner was announced at the February 21st awards event. 

The other 2009 feature film Camera Operator of the Year nominees were Will Arnot (Milk) Stephen Campanelli (Changeling) Kim Marks (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) and Martin Schaer (Eagle Eye).

 Pictured left to right: Arnot Campanelli Gorelick Schaer and Marks. John Toll a two-time Oscar winning director of photography presented the honor. Toll explained the importance of the camera operator: “As a director of photography I know how much I rely on the artistry and the skill of camera operators. I trust their taste and appreciate their talent and I understand what a tremendous contribution they make in accomplishing the creative ambitions of any film.”

 Oscar nominee Wally Pfister (The Dark Knight) began the evening speaking for camera technician Bob Hall.

“Bob took his work on The Dark Knight to a new level ” Pfister said. “In addition to the daily challenge of shooting method actors in anamorphic 35mm film Bob joined myself operator Bob Gorelick and Chris Nolan in breaking new ground by being the first to shoot with Imax cameras on a dramatic feature film release. In case you were not aware Imax has the shallowest depth of field of any film format making focus far more critical than conventional 35mm.” Bob Hall the recipient of the Camera Technician Lifetime Achievement Award explained his journey to the podium by telling stories of his fortunate career.

“It is ironic that I should get recognition for a job that by its very nature should go unnoticed ” he said. “On the screen the focus should be transparent and on the set my job is to be unobtrusive. I admit it is a very strange craft to acquire. Almost no one knows what it is that I do on a movie. Imagine if I interviewed for a job in the real world and was asked 'What are your skills?' I would say 'I can guess how far you are from me’.”