Clubhouse Conversations — Napoleon

Editors' note: In-depth coverage of cinematographer Dariusz Wolski, ASC's work on Napoleon is featured in American Cinematographer's January 2024 issue. Read the full story here — and learn more here about how to subscribe to the industry's leading journal of motion-picture production techniques.

In this interview, cinematographer Dariusz Wolski, ASC is joined by interviewer Dave Perkal, ASC to discuss his work on Napoleon — the epic drama from director Ridley Scott based on Napoleon Bonaparte's rise to power.

Napoleon follows the eponymous commander-turned-emperor (played by Joaquin Phoenix) through his most famous battles, his ascent to the throne of France, and his all-consuming relationship with his wife, Joséphine (Vanessa Kirby). The film marks the ninth collaboration between Wolski and Scott, since the filmmakers first teamed up to make Prometheus in 2012.

In this interview, Wolski discusses his approach to the film's sprawling battle scenes; capturing large-scale action with multiple cameras; basing his work off of conceptual art, period paintings and Scott's drawings; how he and the crew lit intimate scenes between the two leads, and more.

Dariusz Wolski, ASC is a cinematographer whose credits include Crimson Tide (for which he was nominated for an ASC Award); Dark City; four entries in the Pirates of the Caribbean series (The Curse of the Black Pearl, Dead Man's Chest, At World's End, On Stranger Tides); Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street; The Martian; and News of the World (for which he was nominated for an Academy Award and an ASC Award).

Dave Perkal, ASC is a cinematographer working in film, TV and commercials whose recent series credits include Marvel’s Runaways, Netflix's Cowboy Bebop and Warner Bros.' The Vampire Diaries.

You’ll find all episodes in our ASC Clubhouse Conversations discussion series here.