March 08, 2014 9:09pm PT by Carolyn Giardina
'Gravity' Tops Camera Operators Awards
Gravity's Peter Taylor won the feature film camera operator of the year award at the Society of Camera Operators Lifetime Achievement Awards, during which the society paid tribute to Sarah Jones, the 27-year-old assistant camerawoman who was killed Feb. 20 while on location in Georgia.
Jones' parents, Richard and Elizabeth Jones, were among the 500 guests in attendance for the ceremony, held Saturday at the Skirball Cultural Center. They accepted an honorary associate membership for their daughter, and Richard Jones addressed the crowd, saying, "I know she is looking down with a smile. Her enthusiasm is contagious and I hope it lives on."
During the ceremony, the SOC camera operator of the year awards were presented by American Society of Cinematographers president Richard Crudo. In the feature film category, Taylor's work on Gravity topped a field of nominees that included Ian Fox for Saving Mr. Banks, Geoffrey Haley for American Hustle, Jacques Jouffret for Lone Survivor and P. Scott Sakamoto for Labor Day.
Accepting his award, Taylor said "this is for the Gravity camera and grip crew. It's teamwork." He thanked Chivo (Gravity cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki) "for employing me."
For his work on Mad Men, Don Devine was honored as camera operator of the year in television. The nominees in that category also included Nicholas Davidoff for Homeland, Steve Fracol for Scandal, Kenji Luster for Body of Proof and James Reid for American Horror Story: Asylum.
"I'd feel more comfortable with a camera to stand by," Devine said smiling as he accepted his award.
While presenting, Crudo received applause when he said, "I believe camera operating is a full time time job, meant to be performed by a person who is not also the director of photography."
Lifetime Achievement Award honorees were Chris Haarhoff, camera operator (Saving Private Ryan, Fight Club, Almost Famous); William Coe, camera technician (The Avengers, J. Edgar, Jersey Boys); Barry Wetcher, still photographer (Goodfellas, Quiz Show, Sherlock Holmes); and Jack Carpenter, mobile camera platform operator (Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Crash, The Matrix).
Filmtools' founder Stan McClain received the Distinguished Service Award; and Leonard Chapman, founder of Chapman-Leonard Studio Equipment, was honored with the President's Award.
Technical Achievement Awards were presented to company president Tom Hallman on behalf of Pictorvision, and founder and president Dave Grober on behalf of Motion Picture Marine.
The honor for Historical Shot went to J. Michael Muro for his zip line shot in The Mighty Quinn.
The SOC donates all proceeds from the show to the Vision Center at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles.