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THE AMERICAN CINEMATOGRAPHER
July 1, 1922
Ziu em at u grapher
The astute philosopher who declared that a man who could write a better poem or build a better mouse trap could hang out his shingle in a jungle and have the world trample out all the underbrush in reaching his door, had, substantially, the right idea. But before such a higera from the mass of poets or mouse-trap builders could start, the world would have to know in just what jungle this retiring expert had located.
It is the same with cinematographers. The man who can accomplish better things with a motion picture camera always will be in demand — PROVIDED, his name goes out with his work and those who want cinematographers know, upon seeing a film, who is responsible for its photographic excellence.
Screen credit is the cinematographer’s due, just as it is the star’s, the director’s, or the producer’s. The cameraman deserves proper recognition, for it is only when he receives this that he can be judged by the faults or the merits of his work.
Certain producing organizations have instituted a system of placing the director’s and the photographer’s credit lines at the end instead of at the introduction of a picture, which means they might about as well leave the credit lines off altogether. After the final scene is over the people are walking out of the theatre without stopping to see who is responsible, in a large measure, for the entertainment they have just enjoyed. Even if they remained in their seats it is seldom that the projectionist would run the remaining few feet of film telling by whom the picture was directed and photographed.
Aside from the fact that in all justice the cinematographers should have screen credit at the introduction of the picture, the only place where it amounts to anything, this credit is a definite asset to the producer. The knowledge that the film is to bear his name will give the cameraman a greater incentive for careful work. The photo
graphy will always be better if the man at the crank knows that his is the credit for good cinematography and his the blame for poor.
If this matter of screen credit is taken with producers in the proper way they doubtlessly will see the justice of our contention. With few exceptions, the heads of producing organizations are anxious to play fair with the men working for their success. This should only be a question of getting together.
With this issue The American Cinematographer enters upon a bigger and broader scope of service to the art of motion picture photography. The need for a technical magazine of national influence, covering the activities of the entire film industry, has been so clearly expressed The Society of Cinematographers has decided to respond to this need.
While this magazine has already gained recognition throughout the industry as the only publication of its kind, the board of directors has prepared a program of expansion that will make The American Cinematographer of even more general appeal and of greater national influence.
Representatives have been established in principal cities of the East and are now working to build up the magazine in an editorial and a business way upon the solid foundation erected in the past few years by The American Society of Cinematographers. Although the magazine is published by this Society, it is devoted to the interests of the entire film industry. Aid and criticism from those in other branches of this great work will be welcomed.
It is with extreme regret that the directors announce the loss of Silas E. Snyder, as editor of this publication, as he is to be associated with the Rockett-Naylor Productions, Inc., an organization for which he formerly worked. While the Society is
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