At long last, Roger Deakins is an Oscar winner, taking home the award for Best Cinematography. After 14 nominations over 23 years, the beloved cinematographer has taken home the big award thanks to his work on Blade Runner 2049. Deakins has worked with several acclaimed directors over the years (he’s filmed 12 movies with the Coen brothers alone) but his big win comes for his third collaboration with Denis Villeneuve.
“Thank you,” Deakins began as the entire crowd at the Dolby Theatre erupted into a standing ovation. “I want to share this with my wife of 27 years. James, whatever.”
He continued. “I really love my job. I’ve been doing it a long time as you can see. But one of the reasons I really love it is because of the people I work with, both in front of the camera and behind the camera. Some of my crew on Blade Runner I’ve been working with for over 30 years and others I met for the first time in Budapest. This is for every one of them. I’ve got to say it’s for us because it was a team effort.”
In 2015, Deakins told EW about the making of Sicario (his previous film with Villeneuve) and explained how his process is specific to each movie and director he works with.
“I like working with Denis because we have a great collaboration and he’s really searching for something particular, something personal, to his particular view,” Deakins told EW. “So that’s where it starts from. And then it’s a very slow process. I like a lot of prep. I like to think about the script a lot. I like to talk through the script with a director, and Denis and I have long conversations about things. And we sit down and we start storyboarding scenes … But! When you’ve done all that, a lot of it comes down to what happens on the day as well. A lot of it’s down to the way the actors play a scene, the kind of light, the weather. There are so many unpredictable elements.”
To finally take home the trophy, Deakins beat out rivals Bruno Delbonnel (Darkest Hour), Hoyte van Hoytema (Dunkirk), Rachel Morrison (Mudbound), and Dan Laustsen (The Shape of Water).
For the full list of 2018 Oscar winners, click here.