How Cinematographer Linus Sandgren Used Format to Change Visual Tone In ‘First Man’

Shooting IMAX to film Neil Armstrong’s moon landing was more than just about scope.

In preparation for First Man, cinematographer Linus Sandgren remarks that director Damien Chazelle “wanted it to feel immersive and realistic like a documentary” adding “his initial proposal was to have it handheld, cinéma vérité style in the era of the 60s and 70s where you’d have an Aaton on your shoulder with a small zoom and shoot.” It was the sort of thing that was appealing to Sandgren and was the complete opposite visually from the work the two did on La La Land.

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