Dante Spinotti

Active - 1981 - 2021  |   Born - Jan 1, 1941   |   Genres - Drama, Thriller, Comedy Drama, Crime, Comedy

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Biography by Hal Erickson

A superb stylist, Italian cinematographer Dante Spinotti was a prime factor in the artistic success of such '80s critical favorites as Fabrio Carpi's Basileus Quartet (1982) and Lina Wertmuller's Sotto...Sotto (1985). Spinotti's first American film, Choke Canyon (1986), is distinguished by its excellent use of the widescreen format and its heartstopping aerial photography. Throughout the late '80s and early '90s, Spinotti alternated between American and Italian productions with finesse, earning particular notice for his collaborations with director Michael Mann, with whom he worked on Manhunter (1986), The Last of the Mohicans (1992), Heat (1995), and The Insider (1999). In 1991 alone, Dante Spinotti aimed his lenses at Hudson Hawk, True Colors, and Frankie and Johnny; although the dramatic value of these films is questionable, they cannot in any way be faulted photographically. One of Spinotti's greatest triumphs came in 1997, when he earned an Oscar nomination -- as well as a number of other honors -- for his gorgeous work on L.A. Confidential. In 2000, he and Confidential director Curtis Hanson enjoyed a second collaboration on The Wonder Boys, a comedy/drama starring Michael Douglas and Tobey Maguire.

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