February 10, 2021
A David Fincher film has a number of hallmarks to it, but one guarantee is some top-notch cinematography. His latest movie, Mank, is certainly another example of this. Fincher’s cinematographer here is Erik Messerschmidt, who is quickly becoming a major name in the business. Messerschmidt is a terrific up and coming DP, one who is a major reason why Mank is as good as it is. Given the talent on display, as well as the unique visual elements on display in Netflix’s likely Oscar juggernaut, an opportunity to speak with him was one I couldn’t pass up. Cinematographers are always great to talk to, and he was no exception.
Below, you can hear my conversation with Messerschmidt. I was fascinated to hear about working with Fincher, how Mank came together, and basically everything Messerschmidt had to say. He’s clearly a big cinephile, and that comes across in the discussion. He’s also very quick to express humility when praised, though he’s about to become an Academy Award nominee, so he should prepare for more kudos. Right before he gets cited by Oscar (and potentially wins the Best Cinematography category), take a listen to my chat with Messerschmidt. It’s a good one, especially for Mank fans, as he has some really interesting details to share.
Here now is my interview with Mank cinematographer Erik Messerschmidt. Enjoy.