American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 62

A Friend in Need
Óscar Faura teams with director
J.A. Bayona to shoot a
coming-of-age drama in a fantastical
framework for A Monster Calls.
By Michael Goldman
*|*

S

truggling to come to grips with his mother's illness, a lonely,
bullied British boy named Conor (Lewis MacDougall)
inadvertently summons a fantastical guardian - an ancient
yew tree come to life (performed via motion capture and
voiced by Liam Neeson). Depending on one's interpretation of
A Monster Calls, Conor is either tormented or assisted by his
nightmarish companion, whose very existence is up for debate.
Adapted by Patrick Ness from his novel, which was based on
an original idea by Siobhan Dowd, A Monster Calls represents
the third feature collaboration between director J.A. Bayona
and cinematographer Óscar Faura.

62

November 2016

Although Faura and Bayona began their professional
careers side by side, the cinematographer reports that he still
finds himself "challenged and driven to face something that
you haven't experienced before" every time they work together.
The two were classmates at ESCAC - Escola Superior de
Cinematografia i Audiovisuals de Catalunya - in Barcelona,
and shot short films, music videos and commercials together
for years. Faura went on to shoot Bayona's first two features -
The Orphanage and The Impossible - before tackling this latest
project.
The production of A Monster Calls required stylized 2D
animated sequences and numerous visual-effects shots to be
woven into a delicately choreographed live-action drama.
Under the watchful eye of visual-effects supervisor Félix
Bergés, several facilities contributed elements to the CG creature. Faura's first feature-length foray into digital acquisition,
the production employed Alexa XT Studio cameras outfitted
primarily with Vantage Film Hawk V-Lite Vintage '74
anamorphic prime lenses to capture imagery in 2.39:1 anamorphic. (See sidebar, page 66.)
Digital-imaging technician Pablo Lago notes that image
data was captured to onboard Codex XR Capture Drives, and
then ported to two Mac Pro DIT stations that he managed on

American Cinematographer



American Cinematographer - November 2016

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of American Cinematographer - November 2016

Contents
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - Intro
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - Cover1
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - Cover2
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 1
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 2
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - Contents
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 4
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 5
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 6
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 7
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 8
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 9
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 10
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 11
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 12
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 13
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 14
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 15
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 16
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 17
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 18
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 19
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 20
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 21
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 22
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 23
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 24
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 25
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 26
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 27
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 28
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 29
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 30
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 31
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 32
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 33
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 34
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 35
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 36
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 37
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 38
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 39
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 40
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 41
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 42
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 43
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 44
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 45
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 46
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 47
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 48
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 49
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 50
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 51
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 52
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 53
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 54
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 55
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 56
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 57
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 58
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 59
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 60
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 61
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 62
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 63
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 64
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 65
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 66
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 67
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 68
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American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 70
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 71
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 72
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 73
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 74
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American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 76
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American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 81
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American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 84
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 85
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 86
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 87
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - 88
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - Cover3
American Cinematographer - November 2016 - Cover4
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