Professional life

Jacques Perrin has left us…
By Eric Guichard, AFC

Jacques Perrin

Jacques, you’ve gone and joined your partner and our mutual friend Luc Drion, who had left us much too soon, and I am sure that both of you will have impassioned discussions while you watch us muddling about during these difficult times for cinema, for politics, and for the future of planet Earth.

Halyna Hutchins passed away in the midst of her work as a cinematographer

In memory of

The cinematography world is in mourning as a result of the death of Halyna Hutchins, a cinematographer originally from Ukraine, which occurred on Thursday 21 October 2021, at the age of 42, on the set of Joel Souza’s western film Rust, in New Mexico (USA). A rising star with a promising talent and a warm personality, her work had been noticed on Pollyanna McIntosh’s Darlin’ (2019), Michael Nell’s Blindfire and Adam Egypt Mortimer’s Archenemy (2020). The AFC’s cinematographers send their condolences to her family and loved ones. May her memory live on!

Tribute to Jean Penzer
By Marc Salomon, consulting member of the AFC

Jean Penzer

Born on 1st October 1927 at Livry-Gargan to parents of Russian birth. His father was born at Krisilo (today in Ukraine) and his mother at Vitebsk (today in Belarus). They met in Odessa before moving to France in 1911, where they were naturalized in 1928. Jean-Bernard Penzer studied cinema at the Vaugirard cinema school from 1945-1947 (same class as Jean Boffety, Pierre Tchernia, Georges Leclerc, René Mathelin and Georges Dufaux) before working as an assistant cameraman from 1947-1955.

Death of cinematographer Pascal Poucet

In memory of

We were saddened to learn of the death of cinematographer Pascal Poucet, which occurred on Friday 21 May2021 at the age of 73. Having frequented the art world his entire life, his cinematographic work took him far off of the beaten path and carefully followed the work of the artists he met, and some of whom he followed for a time.

Passing of Cinematographer Jean Penzer

Jean Penzer

We were deeply saddened to learn of the death of cinematographer Jean Penzer, AFC, ASC, in Paris on 21 May 2021, at the age of 93. Trained at the Vaugirard school just after the War, he served as an assistant and worked on short films before beginning his career as a cinematographer in 1959, thanks to Philippe de Broca (Les Jeux de l’amour), with whom he worked on several different occasions, whilst also working with Alex Joffé, Philippe Labro, Bertrand Blier, Chantal Akerman, Jacques Demy, and others. He was a honorary member of the AFC from 2007, and he had received the César award for Best Cinematography in 1986 for On ne meurt que deux fois, by Jacques Deray.

Passing of Cinematographer Willy Kurant, AFC, ASC

Willy Kurant

We were deeply saddened to learn of the death of cinematographer Willy Kurant, AFC, ASC, in Paris on Saturday, 1st May 2021, at the age of 88. Trained in the heyday of television reporting, he described himself as the “leader of the second group of the New Wave”. He was a daring and eclectic cinematographer whose career, in France and in the USA, lasted over sixty years. His work was recognized on films by directors as different as Agnès Varda, Jean-Luc Godard, Jerzy Skolimowski, Orson Welles, Serge Gainsbourg, Maurice Pialat, and Philippe Garrel in recent years.

Bertrand Tavernier’s Last Voyage

Bertrand Tavernier

With Bertrand Tavernier’s death on 25 March 2021 at the age of 79, the 7th Art lost the last member of its French branch of so-called “classic” filmmakers. A man with an unquenchable curiosity and an encyclopedic knowledge, he had made himself at home within cinema, where he enjoyed both making his films and living the different stages of his life. The camera operators, with whom he enjoyed sharing books and rare, forgotten finds from screens of all sorts – as well as with his other coworkers, friends or acquaintances – were, according to this director, his allies.

Letter to Bertrand Tavernier about the remastering of “L’Horloger de Saint-Paul”
By Pierre-William Glenn, AFC

Bertrand Tavernier

In late January 2015, cinematographer Pierre-William Glenn, AFC, was asked to take over the color grading process of Bertrand Tavernier’s L’Horloger de Saint-Paul at Laboratoires Éclair, in advance of the release of a Blu-Ray DVD version two months later. He’d sent his friend, the director, a letter, in which he shared his emotion at watching the film again and remembering the experience of shooting beside him. Here’s an excerpt…

What Bertrand Tavernier loved was the cinema!
By Alain Choquart, cinematographer and director

Bertrand Tavernier

Forty years ago, nearly to the day, shooting on Coup de torchon began. I was Pierre-William Glenn’s assistant cameraman. We’d just finished Alain Corneau’s Le Choix des armes, and, before that, Yves Boisset’s Allons z’enfants, on which I’d debuted as a second assistant. Three films without a single day of rest between the end of the shoot and the start of camera tests, and there I was, promoted to the operator for Tavernier’s film. I didn’t imagine the human, cinephile and professional adventure I was embarking upon.

In Memoriam of Bertrand Tavernier

Bertrand Tavernier

The recent passing of Bertrand Tavernier has elicited many reactions from all sides of the world of cinema. Besides those written by a few personalities, we share below memorials written by Richard Andry, AFC, Pierre-William Glenn, AFC, Agnes Godard, AFC, Laurent Heynemann, Pascal Lebègue, AFC, Denis Lenoir, AFC, Gilles Porte, AFC, and Myriam Vinocour, AFC.

Death of cinematographer Renan Pollès, protean artist

In memory of

Renan Pollès, cinematographer and director, but also writer, contemporary artist, and passionate archaeologist, passed away at the age of 76 on 23 October 2019. He will be remembered for the refinement of his cinematography on films by Michel Andrieu and Pascal Thomas, which are like reference points that emerge out of a filmography that often preferred to take the road less traveled, far from mainstream cinema, out of loyalty to filmmakers with fanciful and imaginative worlds such as Jean-Michel Barjol, Jean Rollin, Robert Lapoujade, Yvan Lagrange, Jacques Robiolles, and others.

Jean Monsigny has left us

Jean Monsigny

Cinematographer Jean Monsigny passed away on Wednesday 18 September 2019, at the age of eighty-three. A member of the AFC and an artist in the broadest sense of the term, he filmed about seventy fictions and documentaries for cinema and television during his forty-five-year-long career.

Pierre Lhomme, from Sidney Bechet to the "Light of God"

Pierre Lhomme

Pierre Lhomme’s career has traversed nearly fifty years of French cinema, displaying the same ease and rigorousness with directors such as Alain Cavalier, Chris Marker, Jean Eustache, James Ivory, Joris Ivens, René Féret, Jean-Pierre Melville, Jean-Paul Rappeneau, Margurite Duras, Patrice Chéreau, Robert Bresson, Bruno Nuytten, and others. These richly-diverse collaborations were all nourished by an attentive and uninterrupted observation of natural lighting in all of its forms: “I train my eye everywhere, in the street, in the cinema. I am very curious about gazes, ambiences, climates. Reality is a prodigious source of inspiration.” (P.L.)