Arri at the Revolution
How two cinematographers risked all with their camera.
Arriflex cameras have captured some of history's most dramatic moments. Vilmos Zsigmond and the late Laszlo Kovacs, lifelong friends who became two of the most influential cinematographers of their generation, began using Arriflex cameras while in film school in 1956 in Budapest, Hungary. At great danger to themselves, they used the cameras to document the Hungarian Revolution. "They were shooting with the ARRI running off a battery in a shopping bag; they would have been shot on sight if they were caught," says James Chressanthis, who wrote and directed the feature documentary No Subtitles Necessary: Laszlo & Vilmos. To reach safety, the cinematographers carried tens of thousands of feet of their film on a trek on foot across the border into Austria. The following year, after they sought political refuge in the U.S., their footage was aired on CBS by Walter Cronkite.
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