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Sue Smith

American Society of Cinematographers Lauds Student Filmmakers

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The American Society of Cinematographers (ASC) named the 2018 Student Heritage Award winners during a ceremony at the organization’s clubhouse in Hollywood on October 13. Three student filmmakers were honored for demonstrating exceptional abilities in cinematography based on their submitted work. The competition is designed to showcase rising talent and inspire the next generation of filmmakers.


The 2018 winners are:


ASC Sol Negrin Student Heritage Award – Graduate Category:

Steven Breckon for A Place to Stay, American Film Institute (AFI)


ASC Gerald Hirschfield Student Heritage Award – Undergraduate Category:

Matthew Hayward for The Latent Image, Columbia College Chicago


ASC Haskell Wexler Student Documentary Award:

Alejandro Cortes Sanchez for Adrift, School of Visual Arts NYC


A panel of ASC members judged the entries, and the winners were selected from 13 nominees.


“The future of cinematography promises to be exciting, especially after seeing the level of work coming from this year’s submissions,” says ASC President Kees van Oostrum. “The skill and artistry of the next generation should be an inspiration to all of us who create and capture images every day.”


The ASC Student Heritage Awards are unique, as they also celebrate the memory of revered cinematographers and are re-named for esteemed ASC members each year. Negrin was nominated for five Emmy Awards — three for his work on the detective drama Kojak, one for the telefilm The Last Tenant, and one for an episode of the series Baker’s Dozen. His cinematography in television commercials also earned four Clio Awards. Negrin received the ASC Presidents Award in 2010 in recognition of not only his expertise behind the camera, but for being an ambassador of the art and craft of cinematography.


Hirschfeld was honored with the ASC Presidents Award in 2007. His reputation for being a precise, exacting perfectionist led to his first major feature assignment, shooting the Cold War drama Fail-Safe for director Sidney Lumet. He would go on to shoot some 40 feature films, including The Incident, Goodbye Columbus, Cotton Comes to Harlem, Diary of a Mad Housewife, Young Frankenstein, Two Minute Warning, The World’s Greatest Lover, The Bell Jar, Neighbors, My Favorite Year and To Be or Not to Be.


Wexler began his career shooting documentaries and remained a passionate documentarian throughout his career. He earned an Academy Award® in 1966 for Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and a second Oscar® in 1976 for Bound for Glory. He also received nominations for One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (shared with Bill Butler, ASC), Matewan and Blaze. In 1969, Wexler wrote, directed and shot Medium Cool, which is studied by film students worldwide for its cinéma vérité style. In 1992, he was honored with the ASC Lifetime Achievement Award.


Many ASC Student Heritage Award winners have gone on to have successful careers in filmmaking, and several have been invited to be ASC members themselves.


For additional information about the ASC, visit www.theasc.com, and follow them on Instagram (@the_asc), or join American Cinematographer on Facebook, Twitter (@AmericanCine), and Instagram (@american_cinematographer).


The 33rd Annual ASC Awards take place February 9, 2019. The student winners will be commemorated during the gala as well.


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