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Another Sky: Shooting techniques


Another Sky: The first trip to Morocco
Walter Lassally Film-maker
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The first trip was an exploratory trip. And it taught me quite a lot about location hunting and the importance of location... the importance of location preparations, because we failed to do certain things. The... the combination of new director with new cameraman isn't the best combination. Because if you have a new director, it's quite a good idea to have an experienced cameraman who could show you certain things and prevent certain mistakes, which in our case, happened because they weren't prevented. And... one of the mistakes was that... we didn't... we didn't explore Morocco sufficiently and he didn't know Morocco sufficiently to realise that you didn't have to go to the edges of the... of the Sahara to get your... your location. It subsequently turned out that the film could've been made... the end of the film which takes place in this... at the edge of the Sahara, could've been made very nicely in Mogador on the sand dunes, with a comfortable hotel just metres away, and all that. But anyway.

So I went on the first exploratory trip with Sir Aymer and with Gavin, in October, I think it was, of '53, and we looked at all the things and possibilities, and then we came back to England and made the final preparations. And we finally set off for Morocco in January '54.

Born in Germany, cinematographer Walter Lassally (1926-2017) was best known for his Oscar-winning work on 'Zorba the Greek'. He was greatly respected in the film industry for his ability to take the best of his work in one area and apply it to another, from mainstream to international art films to documentary. He was associated with the Free Cinema movement in the 1950s, and the British New Wave in the early 1960s. In 1987 he published his autobiography called 'Itinerant Cameraman'.

Listeners: Peter Bowen

Peter Bowen is a Canadian who came to Europe to study and never got round to heading back home. He did his undergraduate work at Carleton University (in Biology) in Ottawa, and then did graduate work at the University of Western Ontario (in Zoology). After completing his doctorate at Oxford (in the Department of Zoology), followed with a year of postdoc at the University of London, he moved to the University's newly-established Audio-Visual Centre (under the direction of Michael Clarke) where he spent four years in production (of primarily science programs) and began to teach film. In 1974 Bowden became Director of the new Audio-Visual Centre at the University of Warwick, which was then in the process of introducing film studies into the curriculum and where his interest in the academic study of film was promoted and encouraged by scholars such as Victor Perkins, Robin Wood, and Richard Dyer. In 1983, his partner and he moved to Greece, and the following year he began to teach for the University of Maryland (European Division), for which he has taught (and continues to teach) biology and film courses in Crete, Bosnia, and the Middle East.

Tags: Morocco, Sahara

Duration: 1 minute, 31 seconds

Date story recorded: June 2004

Date story went live: 24 January 2008