American Cinematographer - January 2017 - 42

◗

Worlds Apart
Top: Father
Francisco Garrpe
(Adam Driver) in
the priests' studio
in Macau. Middle:
Prieto finds a
frame inside the
studio. Bottom:
Father Rodrigues
sits in candlelit
contemplation.

that, and even with the Alexa, it wasn't
enough light for anamorphic lenses! So,
we lit most of those scenes with candles
just out of frame or hidden behind
people or objects. In some instances,
we'd hide a tiny lightbulb behind or
beside [the plate of oil] to give some
texture to the wall in the background.
When we needed warm ambient light,
we used clusters of China balls with 40watt bulbs dimmed way down. For
close-ups, we'd usually have a small
bundle of candles out of frame. De La
Tour's paintings seem to emanate light
from the center out, and I tried to
achieve that effect in these scenes.
The priest's studio in Macau,
seen early in the film, also reflects the
Baroque influence. How did you light
that set?
Prieto: I wanted to go for a
Baroque chiaroscuro, so I asked
[production designer] Dante Ferretti
for a window next to the desk so I could
create a strong sidelight. I left to scout
locations, and when I returned, I found
he'd built a long, cathedral-like space
that had vaulted ceilings, a door at one
end and one window at the other -
behind the desk. There were no practicals, and the set was built right up to the
edges of the soundstage. The walls were
off-white, so I asked our gaffer, Karl
Engeler, to put two 4-by-4 mirrors right
42

January 2017

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American Cinematographer - January 2017 - Cover1
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American Cinematographer - January 2017 - 1
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