November 21, 1935 in New York City, New York, USA
Michael Chapman, A.S.C. (born November 21, 1935) is an American cinematographer whose prominence owes most to his innovative work of the 1970s and 1980s.
He began his career as a camera operator, distinguishing himself on Steven Spielberg's Jaws. As a cinematographer, he became famous for his two collaborations with Martin Scorsese, Taxi Driver and Raging Bull. Chapman was also cinematographer for the 1978 remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Chapman's style tends towards high contrasts and aggressive use of strong colors. He is also extremely adept at setting up complex camera movements quickly and improvising on the set. This style is epitomized in the boxing sequences in Raging Bull, during which the camera was often strapped to the actors through improvised rigs. Chapman was also the principal cinematographer on Scorsese's documentary The Last Waltz.
Besides his work with Scorsese, Chapman has worked as Director of Photography for directors Hal Ashby, Philip Kaufman, Martin Ritt, Robert Towne, Michael Caton-Jones, Andrew Davis, and Ivan Reitman. He occasionally makes cameos in films he shoots. He has directed several films, the best known being All the Right Moves (1983), starring Tom Cruise in one of that actor's breakthrough roles. His most recent film was Bridge to Terabithia. According to the DVD commentary, Chapman was planning to retire after the film was finished, saying he would have the last film he shot be a good one.
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