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      Allen Daviau

      Allen Daviau

      Highest Rated: 99% E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982)

      Lowest Rated: 15% The Astronaut's Wife (1999)

      Birthday: Jun 14, 1942

      Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, USA

      As a child, Allen Daviau developed an interest in photography and cameras which he has translated into a career as one of the most respected directors of photography in contemporary cinema. After studying stage lighting and working in camera stores and photo labs, he began working on student films and as a professional photographer. In the mid-1960s, Daviau shot promotional films for recording artists such as Jimi Hendrix, Aretha Franklin and The Who and was a still photographer for The Monkees. In 1967, he was introduced to aspiring filmmaker Steven Spielberg who eventually chose him to shoot the well-received short "Amblin'" (1969). Daviau began to find work as a cinematographer on TV-movies like "The Streets of L.A." (CBS, 1979) and "Rage" (NBC, 1990) before earning his first feature credit, for additional photography, on the special edition of Spielberg's "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" (released in 1980). Considered one of the masters of the Hollywood film of the past two decades, Daviau has a knack not only just for crisp, energetic images that seem to jump off the screen, but also for lighting which delves into the psychological thought processes of the characters. He has been able to capture internal thoughts of characters which some film purists think was more easily done in black and white, not color. In that sense, Daviau may be considered a master of color filmmaking. He has shot several films from the point of view of a small child ("E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial" 1982; "Empire of the Sun" 1987; "Avalon" 1990). His work creates very specific worlds: a placid suburbia visited by a space creature in "E.T."; the grubby backstreets of China and the bleached out Japanese internment camp in "Empire of the Sun"; the gauzy afterlife of Albert Brooks' "Defending Your Life" (1991); and the burgeoning world of Las Vegas in "Bugsy" (also 1991). For "The Color Purple" (1985), Daviau created a rich saturation of colors that blend so that the land and foliage become the people become the sky. Despite earning Oscar nominations for Best Cinematography for "E.T." "The Color Purple," "Empire of the Sun," "Avalon" and "Bugsy," he has yet to win the award. He has continued to work into the 90s earning further praise for his work on Peter Weir's "Fearless" (1993) and Frank Marshall's "Congo" (1995). Allen Daviau died on April 15, 2020 in Los Angeles, CA at the age of 77.

      Highest rated movies

      Visions of Light: The Art of Cinematography



      24% 57% Van Helsing Cinematographer $120.0M 2004
      15% 33% The Astronaut's Wife Cinematographer $10.7M 1999
      No Score Yet 83% Frank Capra's American Dream Unknown (Character) - 1997
      84% 80% Fearless Cinematographer $6.5M 1993
      95% 85% Visions of Light: The Art of Cinematography Unknown (Character) - 1993
      84% 69% Bugsy Cinematographer $48.2M 1991
      98% 83% Defending Your Life Cinematographer $16.2M 1991
      86% 78% Avalon Cinematographer $14.9M 1990
      45% 54% Harry and the Hendersons Cinematographer $27.1M 1987
      78% 90% Empire of the Sun Cinematographer $22.0M 1987
      73% 94% The Color Purple Cinematographer $93.4M 1985
      83% 69% The Falcon and the Snowman Cinematographer $14.9M 1985
      59% 55% Twilight Zone: The Movie Cinematographer - 1983
      99% 72% E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial Cinematographer $439.2M 1982
      No Score Yet 100% Mooch Goes to Hollywood Cinematographer - 1971