Roger Deakins on working with the Coen Brothers, his work as a photographer and more
Roger Deakins got his start as a director of photography in 1977 on the pulpy British drama Cruel Passion. He’s since gone on to collaborate with John Sayles, David Mamet, Martin Scorsese, Ron Howard, Sam Mendes, Denis Villeneuve, and possibly most famously, Joel and Ethan Coen. Roger Deakins helped shoot over half of the Coen Brothers filmography so far, including Fargo and O Brother, Where Art Thou and No Country for Old Men.
In 2018, he won the Academy Award for best cinematography for Blade Runner 2049, and again more recently for the war drama 1917. He’s nominated for what could be his third Oscar this year for his part in Sam Mendes’ Empire of Light.
A couple years back, Roger Deakins published his first ever book of photography. Byways (Damiani, 2021) is a collection of photos Deakins has taken from 1971 to present. It’s a beautiful collection of street photography. One look and you can see clearly the skill and effort Deakins has behind the camera isn’t limited to motion pictures.
He also has a podcast called Team Deakins. It’s a weekly show he does with his wife James about cinematography, the film business and whatever other questions listeners submit to the show.
The acclaimed cinematographer joins the show to talk about his extensive career and when he first got behind the camera. He also talks about what it’s like collaborating with the Coen Brothers and why he likes shooting films for them. Plus, he breaks down his process for capturing still photos and talks about how photography led to his career in film.
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Bullseye is a celebration of the best of arts and culture in public radio form. Host Jesse Thorn sifts the wheat from the chaff to bring you in-depth interviews with the most revered and revolutionary minds in our culture.
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