Eugen Schüfftan

Active - 1927 - 1964  |   Born - Jul 21, 1893   |   Died - Sep 6, 1977   |   Genres - Drama, Comedy, Comedy Drama, Crime

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Internationally prominent cinematographer Eugen Schüfftan designed many innovative special camera effects, notably the Schüfftan Process by which filmmakers were able to blend shots of miniatures with live action via a special mirror. The technique was used in films such as Lang's Metropolis (1926) and Hitchcock's Blackmail (1929). The technique became common until the invention of the much less expensive "matte" techniques. Before becoming a lighting director, Schüfftan was an architect, a painter, and a sculptor. Later in his film career, Schüfftan turned to photographing documentaries and developed a number of innovative techniques. He escaped from Germany in 1933 and went on to become one of the world's most important lighting directors, working closely with such distinguished European directors as Marcel Carne, Ophuls, and Rene Clair. Schüfftan emigrated to the U.S. in 1940 and seven years later became an American citizen. During the '50s and '60s, he continued working around the world. In 1961, he received an Oscar for the cinematography of The Hustler. In 1975, Schüfftan was awarded the Billy Bitzer Award for his lifetime of contributions to the motion picture industry.

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