• Monday, June 17, 2024

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Santosh Sivan to receive Pierre Angénieux tribute at Cannes

Santosh Sivan (Image source: Instagram)

By: Mohnish Singh

Renowned Indian cinematographer Santosh Sivan is to be recognized with the prestigious Pierre Angénieux ExcelLens in Cinematography honour at the Cannes Film Festival 2024.

This accolade marks a significant moment for Sivan as he will become the first Asian to receive this honour, which celebrates outstanding contributions to the field of cinematography.

Preceded by a welcome dinner on May 23, the recognition will culminate in an honorary event on May 24.

On Wednesday, a conference was also held at Bharat Pavilion to celebrate the achievement of Sivan. Actor Aditi Rao Hydari was also present.

Santosh Sivan’s illustrious career spans over decades, featuring more than 55 feature films and numerous documentaries.

His notable works include collaborations with renowned director Mani Ratnam on films such as Roja, Thalapathi, Dil Se, and Iruvar.

Sivan’s cinematic artistry extends to international projects like Bride and Prejudice by Gurinder Chadha and Meenaxi for M.F. Hussain.

In 2013, the Cannes Film Festival introduced the Pierre Angénieux ExcelLens in Cinematography award, named after the pioneer of modern zoom lenses.

The award has since been conferred upon legendary cinematographers such as Edward Lachman, Agnès Godard, Barry Ackroyd, and Roger Deakins.

By receiving this award, Sivan joins this distinguished group, highlighting his exceptional contributions to the art of visual storytelling.

In a conversation with Variety, Sivan reflected on his journey and recalled his early use of Angénieux lenses in the film Raakh (1989), starring Aamir Khan.

Since then, he has consistently utilized these lenses, integrating them into his visual style. “This award means a lot to me as previous recipients include DoPs I admire, including Zsigmond and Deakins,” Sivan said in a conversation with Variety.

Sivan’s work is deeply rooted in the visual culture of Kerala, his home state in southern India.

He eloquently described his artistic philosophy, saying, “For me, light and shade is the melody and composition and movement of the camera is the rhythm. If I find that these two things are there in a shot, then I’m most excited, I like that.”

Sivan also talked about his transition from celluloid to digital cinematography.

His film Urumi (2011), which he directed, marked the beginning of this shift, with Thuppakki (2012) being his first film shot entirely on digital.

The celebration at Cannes 2024 is not only a testament to Sivan’s technical prowess but also to his ability to evoke powerful emotions through his visual storytelling.

The Bharat Pavilion will serve as the backdrop for this momentous occasion, where film industry luminaries will gather to honour Sivan’s remarkable career.

The anticipation for the honorary moment on May 24 is palpable, with the event promising to be a highlight of the Cannes Film Festival.

Santosh Sivan’s recognition at Cannes 2024 underscores the global appreciation for his work and the significant impact of Indian cinematography on the world stage.

Santosh Sivan is the brother of late Indian film director Sangeeth Sivan and ‘Aparichithan’ film director Sanjeev Sivan.

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