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Digital Cinematography Has Taken Some of the Mystery Out of the Role of the DP

In the below video from Cooke Optics, cinematographer John Mathieson (Gladiator, X-Men: First Class) and Rodney Charters (24, Shameless) discuss how the role of the cinematographer has changed with the advent of digital cinematography.

“What has happened is the mystery and the manner in which production will treat me has shifted,” says Charters. “There’s less respect for the cinematographer because now with the digital system and a good quality monitor, the production and the director are well aware of what they’ve got instantly and it’s never going to look much better than that. And they can contribute to that process to make an adjustment because they’re seeing it. To ask if you could put more light in the eyes or to do things that you would otherwise hold mysterious and they wouldn’t see that until the dailies arrived.”