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President's Blog - June 2014

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Greetings ACS colleagues,

The 2014 ACS National Awards for Cinematography were a resounding success and my heartiest congratulations go to the Queensland Branch as it was a fantastic night, with numerous highlights - and gives the Tassie Branch lots to think about.

The LIVE STREAMING initiative was a brilliant idea and something that we can now consider pursuing for all Awards. The Society were involve in the promotion and facilitation of the Miller Anniversary raffle, and we contributed additional book prizes as incentives. The raffles raised around $2500.00 with all proceeds going to the incredibly worthy Motion Picture Industry Benevolent Society (MPIBS). Something we as a Society will continue to support, as it could well benefit our own members in times of hardship.

The volume of time put into any Awards presentation is enormous, and in many cases for that period of time, lives are put on hold in order to ensure the success of these presentations, so thanks and congratulations once again to Queensland President; Jason Hargreaves ACS, the unstoppable Tony O'Loughlan, Tim Jordin, Mitch Kennedy, Karen Hayward, Bryan Crawford (who was busy taking stills) and all who played a part in the overall success and enjoyment of the evening.

I also acknowledge the work done by David Wakeley ACS and Marianne Wakeley.

As I said in my report in the Awards program, our Awards are unique because of many reasons which include the emotion attached to the event itself. I was particularly moved - and I know many others were as well - when Ron Windon ACS was presented with the inaugural Ron Windon ACS Contribution Award. There is no finer example of someone who continues to give and give of himself to the Society and to the members he cares so much about.

At the same time the generosity of Ernie Clark ACS, Mylene Ludgate and Marianne Wakeley cannot and was not ignored as these stalwarts of the Society were also acknowledged for their incredibly generous contributions. In Ernie's case - he also received Life Membership to the Society.

To all the recipients, congratulations for your outstanding work, truly amazing. To our Milli Award winner, John Toon NZCS ACS. It was a fitting result for a beautifully shot film, and it was great that JT made the trip from New Zealand for the presentation.

On the day after the Awards presentation, all the delegates from the Branches present rose bright and early to attend the OGM - Half Yearly Meeting of the National Executive. Some items discussed included the following:


Around three months ago I spoke to Ron Windon ACS about the possibility of him writing a small booklet that we could send to all current members, and new members about the Society and it’s beginnings.

I’m pleased to tell you that the “little book” I envisaged, is now around 180 pages, bound and thanks to the support from PANAVISION and SONY we will publish shortly in order to pass on to members at no cost. I cannot emphasise the contribution or thank Ron Windon ACS enough on behalf of us all for this truly historic document that will be available to everyone.


Andrew Lesnie ACS ASC and 1st AC - Colin Deane shooting with the ARRI 435 - Serial No. 7485 on The Lord of the Rings. Photo: Pierre Vinet

You are probably not aware but for some time now there has been a concerted campaign led by the unstoppable duo of David Wakeley ACS and David Lewis ACS to convince ARRI Australia and it’s CEO, Stefan Sedlmeier, that it would be great to have an ARRI 435 on display here at the HQ.

Well, Stefan took that a step further and contacted Stephan Schenk, General Manager of Camera Systems in Munich, to see if something could be done about this. At Easter I received the following EMAIL from Stephan Schenk.

As a result of this very generous offer from ARRI, on June 19 at the ACS HQ the camera will be “handed over” as part of one of the NSW Branch "Thursday Night Drop – ins", by Stefan Sedlmeier. Andrew Lesnie will be in attendance to make a presentation to Stefan on behalf of the ACS as a thank you to ARRI.


The Society was invited to attend CINEGEAR LA this year as an Exhibitor, thanks to the pro activity from the industrious Heidi Tobin, which we happily accepted. At the beginning of June, David Wakeley & Ernie Clark will head off to LA to “man the ACS booth” at Cinegear, with help from some of our ACS – LA members, including Peter Moss ACS ASC, Ross Berryman ACS, Toby Oliver ACS and Barry Wilson ACS among many others.

It will afford us the opportunity to increase our ACS brand to a wider audience and to also continue our relationship first hand with the ASC, BSC and other associated organisations. This would not have happened without the generous support of DELUXE – DDP STUDIOS, who have funded the travel and accommodation parts of the exercise.

ACS CineKids

At the recent Executive meeting, it was unanimously decided that the Society should creat a new national membership category for our "junior" filmmakers. So, we've created ACS CineKids.

This new membership category will be open to all children up to the age of 15 years. They will receive a membership certificate, card, note pad and pen, having access to our E news and various screenings and workshops, as well as having the opportunity to be mentored and guided by our "senior" ACS members. The annual membership fee will be $20.00, and there will be no joining fee.

Heidi Tobin is working on promotional material to place in our ACS publications and other outlets, which we will send on in due course.

I ask that all Branches encourage and support this initiative and also our ACS CineKids....our future Cinematographers.

Until next time…
Ron Johanson OAM ACS
National President


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