Sarah Cunningham photographs narrative, documentary, fine art and commercial film. She has collaborated with some of our most talented contemporary filmmakers, including Ken Loach, Guy Maddin and Claire Simon. Her work has taken her to Asia, the Americas, and much of Europe and has garnered many awards including the Fuji Prize for Cinematography in Paris’s Silhouette Festival and Best Documentary at the French short film awards.
Sarah graduated with distinction in cinematography from the national film school of France, La Fémis. Previously she read Classics at Cambridge, and cut her teeth making observational documentaries while living in Mumbai, India.
The BSC has showcased Sarah’s work in their New Cinematographers Night. She operated camera on Ken Loach’s recent Jimmy’s Hall, one of several collaborations as second unit with cinematographer Robbie Ryan. She lensed a short comedy for Jack Whitehall’s tour Jack Whitehall Gets Around and it was screened in arenas around the UK such as Wembley and the O2. This marks an on going collaboration with Jack’s co-writer Freddy Syborn (Bad Education, Cockroaches).
For Guy Maddin’s The Forbidden Room, Sarah filmed for a month in the Pompidou Centre as camera operator and 2nd unit DOP under Ben Kasulke, training her lens on actors such as Udo Kier, Mathieu Amalric and Charlotte Rampling, in an inspired effort to revive great ‘lost films’ of the twentieth century. She shot Akihiro Hata’s mid length Les Invisibles starring César Domboy, an exploration of life on the inside of the French nuclear industry and it ran in competition at Clermont Ferrand. For Claire Simon’s Gare du Nord, starring Nicole Garcia, Sarah spent several weeks filming in the control room of Paris’s Suburban train network, the RER.
Sarah thrives on variety and loves being able to work in different contexts and languages. She is passionate, dedicated, and keenly sensitive to accidental beauty. She is equally at ease with digital and film stock- as long as there is some poetry in the mix.