How that moment changed a life in The Fabelmans

“It was very emotional,” says Janusz Kamiński of working on The Fabelmans, a life story by Steven Spielberg in which the director holds up a mirror to his own family portrait. “I learned so much about him before I came into his life,” the two-time Academy Award winner tells The Envelope. Revitalizing Spielberg’s past, scenes were framed with an eye for classical composition, while romanticizing the lighting during the family’s stay at their New Jersey home. When young Sammy (himself a stand-in for Spielberg) is gifted a movie camera by mother Mitzi (Michelle Williams) to help him overcome troubled dreams, the moment becomes an exuberant metaphor. “It really shows what the film is about,” says Kamiński. “He wanted to be loved and accepted, rewarded and admired like any other child. From her he received the greatest gift of his life. Half of his genes came from her, which I think are his artistic inclinations and the physical talent that has allowed him to make films.” Mitzi glows like an angel in the lower contrast image as the silver camera takes center stage. “I made a conscious choice to make the camera glow, almost like a talisman to stand out. He gets this magic thing that lights his way. And it did, you know.” How that moment changed a life in The Fabelmans

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