Colin Hoult Is Newest ASC Member

Based in Toronto, the cinematographer’s recent work includes Star Trek: Discovery, Guillermo Del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities and FUBAR.

ASC Staff

In 1977 — upon first seeing Star Wars: Episode IV — A New Hope — becoming a filmmaker replaced Colin Hoult’s aspirational childhood dream of becoming an astronaut. He remembers today, “After my dad explained that I’d have to join the Air Force and cut my hair really short, filmmaking seemed like a much easier way to get into a spaceship.”

Seeking information about what it would take to become a filmmaker, he read sci-fi movie fan magazines and made friends in his Toronto neighborhood by talking neighborhood kids into helping him shoot Super 8 shorts. He eventually enrolled in a weekend filmmaking class, after which he also experimented with shooting 16mm and video projects. “Discovering American Cinematographer magazine at a local bookstore changed my life,” he says, “as I could now read and learn so many things about the real nuts and bolts of how films were made, specifically the concept of lighting! Mind blown!”

A chance meeting with a local production manager at a high school career day landed Hoult his first industry job, on a low-budget independent feature. He later worked as a non-union camera assistant while still in high school, sometimes skipping class to do loader jobs, and starting to pull focus by age 19. “A kind cinematographer took me under his wing and invited me to join the CSC [Canadian Society of Cinematographers] as an affiliate member,” he says. “As I worked as a camera assistant, I also shot short films, music videos, documentaries, sports, kids shows — anything I could. When I got the chance to upgrade to operator at age 24, I’d already had a camera on my shoulder for some time.

“As I operated on union shows, I continued my parallel DP career on indie films and commercials. I would also work as 2nd-unit DP on many of the projects I was operator on. At age 29, I became a full member of the CSC. Transitioning full-time to director of photography, most of my best opportunities lay in television, where I had chalked up more than 200 episodic hours of series work as operator. Today, I’m lucky to work on larger-budget streaming and network series, but a good part of me is still a 10-year-old looking for his next cartridge of Super 8.”

Hoult’s television credits as a cinematographer include episodes of Mutant X, The Strain, Designated Survivor, Star Trek: Discovery, Locke & Key, Chucky, Guillermo del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities, and FUBAR, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger.

He has also done additional photography or 2nd-unit work on series including The Firm, Orphan Black, Umbrella Academy and American Gods.

You’ll find his personal site here.

You’ll find the complete roster of ASC members here.

Subscribe Today

Act now to receive 12 issues of the award-winning AC magazine — the world’s finest cinematography resource.

June 2024 AC Magazine Cover
May 2024 AC Magazine Cover
April 2024 AC Magazine Cover