Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Director of Photography

Mike Svitak has been the Director of Photography of "The Devil's Forest" since day one. We previously discussed developing a short script I had written, until I realized there was no reason not to go ahead and shoot a full length feature film.

Mikey has had an extensive career in the industry, and has worked on recent films such as "Iron Man 2," "Terminator Salvation," "Semi-Pro," and "Act of Valor" to name a few. Click on the title of this post to see his resume on imdb.

Here are 2 links to his reel to see some of his work. The first is a Low Resolution, and the second is a High Resolution. You'll have to copy and paste the link in your web browser.

His talent, knowledge, and experience will be a great addition to "The Devil's Forest."


  1. What are some of the responsibilities of the Director of Photography? I'm pretty sure I can guess some more obvious part of his job - but i guess just wondering how closely he works with the Director/how much input he has on the artistic look of the film....

  2. Let me preface by saying, I see the Director of Photography the same way I see a writer. If anyone not in "the business" can name me one screenwriter or one DP, I'd be amazed. These two professions never get the credit they deserve.

    Mikey could probably answer this question more in depth, but bottom line is, the DP has a ton of input. For me, I'll be relying heavily on Mikey in regards to the look of the film. In preproduction, I might give Mikey a few films to use as a reference for the overall atmosphere of our film. It'll be his job to turn those references into a reality for us.

    He'll have input in regards to lighting and camera work on every single scene, and thank God for that, because this is a creative process one person can't do alone.

    Because I've worked with Mikey in the past, he'll be a lot more than just a DP. I'll look to him for things like script and actor notes as well.

  3. Needless to say, he's one of the most important people on set.

  4. To answer your question, Jolly, the director of photography (DP) is responsible for translating the director's vision to the screen. This is done creatively, working closely with the director to achieve this by employing specific camera and lighting techniques to enhance the visual experience of the film.
    Shaun covered the role pretty well in his answer. Once photography has begun the DP has a huge responsibility to deliver the images in a timely fashion as well. The DP works closely with the Assistant Director to do this. While Shaun works and rehearses with the actors the DP is lighting and preparing the shots. To go into production is a exhilarating process, especially when you are passionate about the project. I'm looking forward to THE DEVIL'S FOREST and think we can bring some very powerful visuals to life! Loving the blog, Shaun! Keep it up!

  5. Thanks Mikey. I knew he'd be able to explain it better than I.

  6. I appreciate you both taking the time to explain these details - it's really cool (especially, I think, for those of us not already in the know) having this inside look in to how a film develops. I love having the ability to ask questions -and better yet, to have them answered. Thanks guys!