National E-News 1 July 2014


Major National Sponsor

Platinum Sponsors

Gold Sponsors

Silver Sponsor

Bronze Sponsors

National Supporters

In this Issue:

  • Presidents report
  • New Awards category - ACS CineKids
  • Postcard from Geoffrey Simpson ACS
  • CineGear 2014 Report – ACS & DELUXE
  • The Image Makers - New book
  • A Postcard from Mark Lapwood in Pakistan
  • Miller is celebrating 60 years
  • ARRI donate historic 435 to the HQ Archive
  • ACS HQ Report
  • Murray Forrest & Ron Windon ACS
  • Sponsor Spotlght - GEAR HEAD
  • Canon - ACS National Equipment Initiative
  • A Postcard from Toby Oliver ACS in LA
  • Movie Review: The Rover (2014) by James Cunningham
  • Equipment For Sale
  • Andrew Lesnie ACS ASC - Coldplay link
  • Florida Fauna & Flora
  • Bus Stop Films
  • MPIBS - Call for help
  • New ACS Merchandise
  • AFTRS Cinematography Short Courses

Greetings ACS colleagues,

What a fantastic time it’s been of late, with the National Awards in Brisbane, Cine Gear, ACS HQ events, the Miller raffle presentation, ARRI presentation of the historic 435, various Branch events, to name but a few, among numerous highlights. Our Society is continuing our policy of giving members as many benefits as possible, and I think we’re achieving that and more. Please pay your part by letting me know if you feel there are more specific things we could be doing to improve overall. I welcome your input.

State and Territory Awards entries will be open soon, so start thinking about your entries now. You will notice we now have a new Awards category, which reflects our policy to encourage the “grass roots” level of our industry…our ACS CineKids, who will be able to enter their work for the first time this year.

Should you wish your child to join as an ACS CineKid please click on the link for more information, or if you have any questions please contact me on 0413 264400.


CAT 1: CineKids

Productions shot by ACS CineKids members who are 15 years old or under. Winners receive a Framed Certificate

Please support this incredibly worthy initiative by promoting the concept of becoming an ACS CineKids member and then entering into the Awards. The long-term benefits for us all are self-evident.

Until next time…
Ron Johanson OAM ACS
National President

Postcard from Geoffrey Simpson ACS

Greetings from Shanghai! We’ve just passed Shoot Day 106# on Chen Kaige's "A Monk in a Floating World" we hope we are past halfway. It’s a story of a Monk who leaves his Mountain Temple to fend for himself in Hangzhou in the 1930's, a peak period of martial arts in China…so a Kung Fu movie with some humanity, some poetry, some beautiful images, stunning sets and landscapes, some goofy humour and some fighting…a huge amount of fighting actually. I have help from Gaffer; Michael Adcock, Adrien Seffrin First AC, Chris Reig DIT and we had Key Grip, Jay Munro from NZ with us until he retired from the field with stomach problems, we certainly wish him well.
Just had two days of work on West Lake in beautiful Hangzhou… someone took this quick snap of a set up but I will try for more…

They are all good guys and hard workers, who normally work seven-day weeks. We are all a bit tired here as the week included a meeting the Yu Yao Mayor dinner, where there are several toasts where one has to skull a full glass of expensive French Red and show your empty glass on completion… it was difficult to drink such good wine so quickly, but we managed. We then had a four am start for the three hour drive to Hangzhou for two days work then drive back to Yu Yao Resort last night where we are now. Eight days of night shooting starting tonight…huge Kung Fu fight on a basketball court. This is such an amazing adventure…I have been here since December 10, 2013 and we may well be here after September 2014…..who knows.


L – R: Adrien Seffrin First AC//Focus Puller, other foreigner is Gaffer; Michael Adcock…others are Grip, Camera and an AD.

Some of our Production team in the rear seats of the Gulfstream 450 owned by a mate of our Director Chen Kaige.

L-R Dee Dee (stunt director/co ordinator - he did Matrix 2+3 so knows Sydney and has good English); Chen Kaige and Chen Hong, his wife and our Producer (she auditioned for one of his films, missed out but got the Director instead, a much bigger role).


Early in June 2014, ACS National Vice President, Ernie Clark ACS and National Secretary, David Wakeley ACS travelled to Los Angeles to represent the ACS at the 2014 Cine Gear Expo.

Main Street, Paramount Studios LA

This would not have been possible without the generous support we received from Alaric McAusland and Hayley Davis at Deluxe Australia, who became our Cine Gear Partners.

The purpose of the ACS attending Cine Gear, and having it's own stand, was to provide encouragement for our many LA based members, and to make the international cinematography industry more aware of the high standing of the innovative, multi genre approach of The Australian Cinematographers Society. Furthermore, it afforded us the opportunity to sell ACS merchandise in the form of T-shirts, Caps, Jackets and our own book The Shadowcatchers: a History of Cinematography in Australia, along with networking opportunities and membership possibilities.



The Image Makers

This month will see the long awaited launch of our latest publication The Image Makers: A brief history of the Australian Cinematographers Society, written by Ron Windon ACS. This fantastic new 160 page A5 book will be available FREE to all members, upon membership renewal. The publishing has been made possible with the generous support from Panavision and Sony, and my thanks to both Paul Jackson and Nick Buchner.

New member cards & a copy of ‘The Image Makers: A Brief History of the ACS’, currently at the printers, will be going out in the next couple of weeks to those members who have already paid their 14/15 subscriptions.

A Postcard from Mark Lapwood in Pakistan

Hi everyone,

Just finished a three day shoot for Suzuki Pakistan (JWT Karachi), to launch their new compact car, the Wagon R. We shot exteriors in Islamabad, Rawalpindi and ‘Changa Manga’ (yep that’s the real name), then did the studio shots in sleepy old Lahore. The beautifully charming pace of Lahore is very relaxing but tough work if you have a local crew chasing a sunset. Thank god for Karachi crew, they know how to move.

We used an Alexa with Cooke S4’s from a rental house in Karachi and all rigs were shot on a GoPro Hero 3+ Black.

My main man on focus Habib was awesome as always, and gaffer Nawab surpassed expectations. A young looking guy who surprised me with his wealth of experience, he handled our twelve “light men” with class. ‘Walk slowly my prince’ he’d say with a wry smile as a young trainee slowly approached with a very urgent c-stand.

My legendary art department pulled off a miracle in Lahore custom building a turntable strong enough to hold the car, and it actually worked. I was told this has never been done before in Pakistan. The classic was turning up to the studio to find our hero car ten feet in the air on the local policeman’s fork lift! It was about to be plonked on the side of a potentially very lopsided turntable.

Fortunately I managed to halt proceedings upon realising the turntable would tip over if they went ahead. Could have been a very awkward chat with the client.

The funny stuff? On the reccie outside the shopping mall near Islamabad one day there was an almighty ‘boom!’ We all ducked for split second wondering which way to run… then we saw an F-18 roaring off in the distance, it must have just broken the sound barrier on a training exercise…Phew!! A few minutes later another fighter jet flew over and I managed to catch a glimpse of it’s underbelly to notice the Pakistani flag clearly painted on it, four white stars and a sickle on dark green. My wonderful producer Ali gleefully told me ‘yeah we’re not shy here, we paint our flag on them so they know who’s coming to f—k them! Ha Ha!’ I laughed with him and thought, shiesser! Classic. All in a days work in what’s actually a wonderful country, filled with mostly really lovely welcoming, fun, well educated people… shame about the insurgents!


ACS ACCREDITATION screenings will take place at the ACS HQ on September 12 & 13

Application is now open, but will close on August 30. So if you have been a Full member for 3 years, you are eligible to apply for Accreditation. Should you require any information please contact National President, Ron Johanson or your Branch President.


Join Miller Camera Support Equipment at ACS HQ for a Champagne Toast Celebrating MILLER'S 60th ANNIVERSARY.

Guest of Honour will be renowned Oscar winning Cinematographer Russell Boyd ACS ASC.

Date: Thursday, 31st July 2014
Time: 6.00pm -9.00pm
Venue: Level 2, 26 Ridge Street, North Sydney NSW 2060

Also on the night...

* Launch Announcement of ‘Eric Miller - ACS Technical & Innovation Achievement Award’
* Catch up with industry colleagues and share your Miller stories
* Finger food and drinks will be provided

RSVP is essential to before 20th July!


It was standing room only on Thursday, June 17 at the ACS HQ, for the presentation by ARRI Australia CEO, Stefan Sedlmeier of the ARRI 435 used by Andrew Lesnie ACS ASC on The Lord of the Rings. There were over 70 in attendance who were enthralled by an informal Q&A from Andrew, who put his memory to the test, and answered numerous questions relating to the film. Our thanks to Andrew for giving so generously of his time, and to Stefan and all at ARRI, both here in Australia and in Europe for their overwhelming generosity, enthusiasm and support. Now….to find a suitably prominent place in the HQ for the ARRI 435.

Andrew Lesnie ACS ASC & ARRI Australia CEO; Stefan Sedlmeier

“Where’s Wally?” Part of the audience for the ARRI presentation and Q&A.

Andrew presented Stefan with a special ‘signed” print of the ARRI 435 in use on LOTR. Signed prints were also sent to ARRI Germany.

Andrew Lesnie ACS ASC shooting Orc Commanders, with ARRI 435 Serial number 7485# on "The Lord Of The Rings- Fellowship Of The Ring" 1st AC is Colin Deane. Photo by Pierre Vinet with thanks to Caro Cunningham.


June has been another busy month at the ACS National Headquarters.
The NSW Branch held its regular 3rd Thursday Drop In, and this month it was presentations galore!
Prior to the ARRI presentation Miller CEO, Mark Clementson presented a cheque for proceeds from the Miller raffle to Murray Forrest & Tom Jeffrey who attended on behalf of the MPIBS (The Motion Picture Industry Benevolent Society). He also presented the Society with one of the classic LP tripods in a beautiful rosewood case and this will also proudly join our collection, something for which we are extremely grateful.

David Wakeley ACS accepts the Miller Head and legs from Mark Clementson

L – R: David Wakeley ACS, Marianne Wakeley, Mark Clementson presents Miller raffle proceeds cheque to Murray Forrest representing the MPIBS.

(L-R) Paul Stewart, Eirini Alligiannis, Brett Danton

Auto Desk Smoke Night
A very successful night was held by Con Nicholas (Marketing Autodesk, Inc) and Dean Nurscher (Field Marketing Manager ANZ | Media & Entertainment) demonstrating some new updates on Autodesk Smoke their editing and effects software system.

Canon Workshop
The ACS HQ was buzzing with activity as Canon presented its full range of cinema cameras to an enthusiastic crowd of more than 40 people. The Canon Cinema EOS C500 was the star attraction with cinematographer Brett Danton explaining and demonstrating the capabilities of the camera plus demonstrating the 4K Canon RAW workflow path from image capture to post production. A system which he utilises for his high end TV shoots both locally and internationally.

The Codex “Onboard S” digital recorder was in full use as was the Convergent Design’s “Odyssey 7Q” recorder. Other new products on display were Canon’s very impressive DP-V3010 4K Reference Display Monitor and the Codex portable digital recorder “The Vault”. Canon’s Paul Stewart - Manager Motion Imaging and his team were on hand to answer all questions plus “Team Lemac" led by Sue Greenshields, were available to demonstrate all the Canon products on display. Codex was represented by Kellie Hiatt and Brandon Hislip who had travelled from the USA. A very informative and enjoyable evening was had by all and was presented by Canon in conjunction with Lemac.

Piet De Vries ACS - continues to hold his very successful PDV Digital Cinema Workshops at the headquarters PDV Website

The Australian Production Designers Guild now holds their monthly meetings in the Boardroom on the last Monday of each month. APDG Website

The ACS National Board has also held several meetings this month in the Boardroom.

Support the Headquarters and the ACS at upcoming events and watch it grow. Remember the HQ is there for all members to use.

For details contact:
David Lewis ACS

Richard Wilmot

Murray Forrest & Ron Windon ACS

Murray Forrest & Ron Windon ACS alongside the very Arri 2B that Murray sold to Ron many years ago…Murray observed – “Many Thanks David…What a great pic to have with my old mate, 50 years on and we are still going strong. Thanks again for a terrific night that I greatly enjoyed, I will be writing to Mark Clementson to express the MPIBS' appreciation for their great generosity. I will make sure I don't leave it so long to return to the ACS Headquarters.
Regards to David, Ron and other Committee Members.”


It gives me the greatest of pleasure in announcing Gear Heads continued support of the society and industry it represents by joining the National Platinum Sponsors list. We are a proud Australian owned and managed equipment rental facility offering “Acquisition Exotica” to the local Australian and international film industry.

With our progressive and passionate approach in offering the very latest high-end acquisition equipment along with it’s world class support services, Gear Head has grown successfully over the past years. So we would like to take this opportunity to thank all our customers, clients and friends. Not just for their past and ongoing support, but for allowing us to share and collaborate in their successes. We truly thank you.

As an additional benefit to ACS members to experience our acquisition exotica, Gear Head will extend a minimum discount of 25% on all hires from our extensive inventory.

We look forward to catching up with you all soon.

Best personal regards,

David Knight ACS

CANON - ACS National Equipment Initiative

Applications are now open for submissions from ACS members to apply to use, free of rental costs, specific equipment from CANON AUSTRALIA. This initiative was proposed by Paul Stewart from Canon, and driven by ACS NSW Branch member, Helen Barrow. Entries will only be accepted from financial ACS members, with preference given to emerging cinematographers. Student Members are welcome to apply, however student class projects are excluded from the program.

For more information regarding the guidelines and an Application form, contact Initiative Co-Ordinator: Helen Barrow on 0409 300 040 E:
ACS National President Ron Johanson OAM ACS is also available for any questions on 0413 264 400 OR click here: CANON INITIATIVE

A Postcard from Toby Oliver ACS in LA

Hi Ron
I have just wrapped up the shoot on my first US movie, supernatural thriller ‘6 Miranda Drive’ for Aussie director Greg McLean (Wolf Creek 2). We had great actors like Kevin Bacon and Radha Mitchell in the leads, a terrific LA based crew with a sprinkling of familiar Aussie faces like Costume Designer Nicola Dunn, Stunt Co-ordinator Nash Edgerton, VFX Supervisor Marty Pepper, 1st AC Damian Church and Peter Holland ACS helped out operating for a few days. We shot with two Alexas in 4:3 mode with vintage Kowa and Todd-AO anamorphic lenses which certainly had a lot of ‘character’. All in all it was a fast and furious but very fun 23 day shoot mostly actually on location in LA (a rarity these days with all the rebates on offer in other States) and a couple of days out at spectacular Red Rock Canyon in the desert. The movie is a Universal picture so with luck will be seen by a big audience.
Big hi to everyone back home!
Toby Oliver ACS

Director Greg McLean and Cinematographer; Toby Oliver ACS

MOVIE REVIEW: The Rover (2014) by James Cunnigham

David Michôd’s pressure-filled follow up to Animal Kingdom (2010), The Rover (2014) conquers any narrative problems by delivering outstanding visual entertainment.

Filmmaker Quentin Tarantino is quoted as saying that The Rover is “a mesmerising, visionary achievement”. Sharp, forward-thinking cinematography is provided by Argentinian Natasha Braier ADF, who shot the wonderful The Milk of Sorrow (2009) nominated for an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, and short film Swimmer which won the 2013 BAFTA for Best Short Film. Produced in the sizzling South Australian outback, Braier delivers a unsympathetic visual backdrop where survival-of-the-fittest is the law of the land.

It what would have been a a more expensive but ultimately wise choice, filmmakers chose to shoot The Rover on Super 35 film instead of digital and the decision sure pays off aesthetically. “The economy of the The Rover is the economy of crafts; people are using minimal resources. There’s almost no water and the outside is hostile.”, says Braier on films’s visual styles, “We overexposed the exteriors and made them brighter than usual, then when we go back outside you get an overwhelming sensation of brightness and heat.” What the audience is left to experience is an intense and profound daydream into a crude, unfortunate world which fit’s David Michôd & Joel Edgerton’s story like a glove.

Focusing on two ostensibly conflicted main characters (Guy Pearce & Robert Pattison), Director Michôd has crafted a film that awesomely conveys a blunt view of humanity on the edge of unconsciousness. The cinematography is striking, sound and score sets a splendid unsettling mood, while Pearce’s performance is outstanding. Shots of the Flinders Ranges, Birdsville Track and Simpson Desert make the setting of The Rover just as important an human character on screen. Premiering out of competition in the “Midnight Screenings” section at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival, The Rover is truly outstanding Australian film that our industry should be proud of… four-stars.

Melbourne, Australia

FOR SALE – 3 x Canon FD telephoto lenses

Can be sold separately or as a set, all in excellent condition:

1. Canon FD 300mm F2.8L Serial no.13849
2. Canon FD 400mm F2.8L Serial no.11266
3. Canon FD 500mm F4.5L Serial no.11498

Contact John Ogden ACS for further information including pricing. 0419 659 470


Hi guys,
Here's a link to a Coldplay clip shot last Tuesday in Newtown Sydney. One take………

The main camera was a Handycam (!!) operated by A.L.
Joined by four more cameras at the end, operated by Simon Harding, Callan Green ACS, Meg White and Scott Wood.

Chris Martin and the band are very happy with it.

Handycams! Who woulda thought?

Coldplay Video » - Coldplay Video


We also received the following from Florida based, Queensland member Tony Politis, showing the local fauna that he finds in his Florida backyard. Doesn't worry Tony too much as he worked a lot with Steve Irwin on the Crocodile Hunter series. Here’s the link:
Florida Footage


On 14th June the ACS hosted a lighting class at the HQ, by Bus Stop Films Producer, Genevieve Clay-Smith and partner, ACS member, Henry Smith, assisted by Marianne & David Wakeley ACS.

Bus Stop Films holds film making classes every Saturday for a disabled group, with which they have made several short films where the group carry out various film making duties, mentored by all levels of film crew personnel. The ACS is very happy and very proud to support these inspirational people, who give their time freely to this cause, particularly Genevieve and Henry.

by David Wakeley ACS

Find out more about Bus Stop Films here:

One of the group puts a “cookie” to good use.

The Bus Stop Films group listening to Genevieve & Henry


Have you heard of the Motion Picture Industry Benevolent Society?

It’s been providing financial and emotional support to members of the cinema industry for more than eighty years!

It was founded in the years of the Great Depression by people in exhibition and distribution, to help colleagues who had fallen on hard times. More recently, the MPIBS has extended its support to the production and post-production sectors.

Beneficiaries are young and old, working and retired. The MPIBS is a safety net, which enables our friends and colleagues to be cared for when they need it most.

But the Society needs your help to continue its work.

Please visit the MPIBS web page (or put MPIBS in your search engine) for information about how to donate. You could be helping one of your friends or colleagues. MPIBS Website



The eye - catching NEW ACS T shirt is only $25.00 - designed by Scott Windon

Seen at CineGear worn by LA based ACS member Jasmine Lord

New ACS Design Ladies Tees available!

LIMITED STOCK & SIZES - 10,12,14,16

Available from ACS HQ Manager:

Prices stand at:
1 Unisex @ $25.00
1 Ladies @ $30.00

ACS T SHIRT $20.00 (Traditional design)
ACS CAP $20.00
ACS PEN $6.00
ACS MUG $6.00


AFTRS Open has a range of short Cinematography courses in the coming months.

September highlights include Camera Assistants Workshop with Erika Addis (only held once a year) and Modern Cinematography with Ellery Ryan. Details of these and other courses below:

Camera & Sound Basics
An introduction to the techniques and practical skills that will enable them to produce high quality images and sound for documentary and drama.
9 - 10 August

Data Wrangling on Set: File Based Cameras
This one day course is an introduction to managing data from file-based cameras in an on-set environment.
30 August

Camera Assistant’s Workshop with Erika Addis
This intensely practical course is held just once a year. AFTRS Cinematography lecturer and expert DOP Erika Addis introduces participants to the duties and professional requirements of the Camera Assistant in drama, documentary and commercials.
15 - 19 September

Modern Cinematography with Ellery Ryan
What is great cinematography, and how is it achieved? A two day course, led by two time AFI Award winner Ellery Ryan (Is This The Real World, I Love You Too, Van Diemen’s Land, The Rage In Placid Lake) is designed to investigate the theory and practice of visual storytelling.
27 - 28 September

To view all AFTRS Open Cinematography short courses visit the Website

Keep up to date with ACS news via Facebook

ACS Facebook page »

ACS National Headquarters
Level 2, 26 Ridge Street,
North Sydney
NSW 2060
Ph: 02 8920 8535

HQ Manager: David Lewis ACS email
Assistant HQ Manager: Richard Wilmot email


You have received this correspondence because you are a member or affiliate of the ACS.
If you wish NOT to receive correspondence from the ACS NSW branch, please got to
and log in with your membership profile to modify your correspondence options.

Website Members Login »

© 2019 Australian Cinematographers Society