Allen Daviau


Director Of Photography

About

Birth Place
New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
Born
June 14, 1942

Biography

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 rec...

Biography

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).

Filmography

 

Cast (Feature Film)

Cinematographer Style (2006)
Visions of Light: The Art of Cinematography (1992)
Himself

Cinematography (Feature Film)

Van Helsing (2004)
Director Of Photography
Sweet (2000)
Director Of Photography
The Tigger Movie (2000)
Director Of Photography
The Astronaut's Wife (1999)
Director Of Photography
Congo (1995)
Director Of Photography
Fearless (1993)
Director Of Photography
Defending Your Life (1991)
Director Of Photography
Bugsy (1991)
Director Of Photography
Avalon (1990)
Director Of Photography
Harry And The Hendersons (1987)
Director Of Photography
Empire Of The Sun (1987)
Director Of Photography
The Falcon And The Snowman (1985)
Director Of Photography
The Color Purple (1985)
Director Of Photography
Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984)
Director Of Photography
Twilight Zone--The Movie (1983)
Director Of Photography
Legs (1983)
Director Of Photography
Harry Tracy (1982)
Director Of Photography
E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (1982)
Director Of Photography
Rage (1980)
Director Of Photography
The Boy Who Drank Too Much (1980)
Director Of Photography
The Streets of L.A. (1979)
Director Of Photography

Film Production - Main (Feature Film)

Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977)
Photography

Misc. Crew (Feature Film)

The Tigger Movie (2000)
Dp/Cinematographer
The Astronaut's Wife (1999)
Dp/Cinematographer
The Astronaut's Wife (1999)
Other
Visions of Light: The Art of Cinematography (1992)
Other
Harry And The Hendersons (1987)
Other
Empire Of The Sun (1987)
Dp/Cinematographer
The Color Purple (1985)
Dp/Cinematographer
The Falcon And The Snowman (1985)
Dp/Cinematographer
Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984)
Dp/Cinematographer
Twilight Zone--The Movie (1983)
Dp/Cinematographer

Cast (Special)

Stanley Kubrick: A Life in Pictures (2001)

Cinematography (Short)

Amblin' (1969)
Cinematographer

Life Events

1967

Introduced to Steven Spielberg

1969

Served as cinematographer for Spielberg's short "Amblin'"

1979

First TV credit as director of photography, "The Streets of L.A.", a CBS TV-movie starring Joanne Woodward

1980

First feature film credit, Spielberg's "Close Encounters of the Third Kind: Special Edition" (additional photography)

1981

First feature credit as director of photography, "Harry Tracy"

1982

Chosen by Spielberg as director of photography on "ET, The Extra-Terrestrial"; earned first Academy Award nomination

1984

Headed the second unit photography on Spielberg's "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom"

1985

Shot pilot of the NBC series "Amazing Stories", executive produced by Spielberg

1985

Won second Oscar nomination for Best Cinematography for Spielberg's "The Color Purple"

1987

Served as cinematographer on Spielberg's "Empire of the Sun"; won ASC and BAFTA Awards also earned third Academy Award nomination

1990

First screen collaboration with Barry Levinson, "Avalon"; garnered fourth Oscar nod

1991

Shot Levinson's "Bugsy"; won fifth Academy Award nomination

1992

Was one of the interview subjects in the documentary "Visions of Light: The Art of Cinematography"

1995

Was director of photography on "Congo", directed by Frank Marshall

Videos

Movie Clip

Avalon (1990) - I Came To Baltimore From director Barry Levinson, camera by Allen Daviau and production design by Norman Reynolds, the much-praised opening sequence, elder Sam (Armin Mueller-Stahl) narrating the arrival of his younger self (Michael Krauss) in Baltimore, from Avalon, 1990.
Avalon (1990) - I'll Never Understand This Holiday Thanksgiving, Baltimore, late 1940's, the family Krichinsky (also the director Barry Levinson's mother's maiden name), Sam (Armin Mueller-Stahl) and Eva (Joan Plowright) hosting, son Jules (Aidan Quinn) opposite, Gabriel (Lou Jacobi) griping, plus Elijah Wood age nine, early in Avalon, 1990.
Bugsy - Shirt Off My Back Ben Siegel (Warren Beatty) leaves Lansky (Ben Kingsley) and Luciano (Bill Graham) waiting while he visits "Jerry the Bookie" (Anthony Russell) in an early scene from Bugsy, 1991.
Bugsy - Religious Epiphany Ben (Warren Beatty) has a revelation after visiting a ramshackle Las Vegas casino with Mickey Cohen (Harvey Keitel) and Virginia Hill (Annette Bening) in Barry Levinson's Bugsy, 1991.
Bugsy - Opening The informative and somewhat lewd opening sequence to director Barry Levinson's Bugsy, 1991, featuring star and producer Warren Beatty, from a book by Dean Jennings.
Bugsy - Manpower Pal George Raft (Joe Mantegna) brings Ben (Warren Beatty) to the set of his movie "Manpower" where he sees Marlene Dietrich (Ksenia Prohaska) and meets Virginia Hill (Annette Bening) in Bugsy, 1991.
Bugsy - Jack Dragna Ben (Warren Beatty) makes a business call on L.A. racketeer Jack Dragna (Richard C. Sarafian) in director Barry Levinson's Bugsy, 1991, from a script by James Toback.

Trailer

Family

George Daviau
Father
Alice Daviau
Mother

Bibliography