August 10, 2020

Director Ron Howard and DP Lincoln Else on the documentary Rebuilding Paradise

Oscar-winning director Ron Howard talks about directing his first documentary, Rebuilding Paradise, about the devastating Camp fire that completely wiped out the town of Paradise, California on November 8, 2018. The film follows the people in community over time as they deal with the tragedy and begin rebuilding. Directing a documentary was a new experience for Ron, and he felt a personal connection to the town- his mother-in-law had lived in Paradise. Ron Howard and Brian Grazer’s production company, Imagine, had wanted to start producing documentaries and they sent out a crew to begin shooting just one week after the fire. Ron picked up some new skills while working on the unscripted project. He had to learn how to let the cameras follow the flow of the conversation, and to be minimalist in covering every possible angle. The experience has led him to make directorial choices in his scripted work that are more verité. Director of photography Lincoln Else worked closely with Ron and the Imagine production team, and developed a unified visual language for Rebuilding Paradise that he communicated with the other shooters. Lincoln learned documentary filmmaking at an early age, loading 16mm mags and assisting his father, documentarian and professor Jon Else. He likes a very simple hand-held style, opting to just put a camera on his shoulder in order to be as reactive as possible. Though footage from many different news sources and people’s personal videos was used, the bulk of the interview content in Rebuilding Paradise was “fly on the wall” style.

See Rebuilding Paradise online and support your local theater!

Find Ron Howard:
Instagram @realronhoward
Twitter: @realronhoward

Find Lincoln Else:
Instagram: @lincolnelse

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August 21, 2019

Bill Wages, ASC: Talks The Forgiven, Into the West, Sun Records, Burn Notice, Down in the Delta, and inventing Glimmerglass filters.

Bill Wages’ motto: complicated is easy, simple is hard. He talks about his work on the film, “The Forgiven,” the TV series “Burn Notice,” “Sun Records,” “Into the West,” and working with poet Maya Angelou on her directorial project “Down in the Delta.” Bill also invented a number of groundbreaking cinematography tools: Tiffen Glimmerglass diffusion filters and two flagging devices known as WagFlags and WagBags.