Cinematographer Stephen Burum — whose body of work includes 1988’s The Untouchables, one of eight films he made with Brian DePalma; and 1993’s Hoffa, for which he was Oscar-nominated — will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award at this year’s EnergaCamerimage international cinematography festival. The 30th edition of Camerimage will be held Nov. 12-19 in Toruń, Poland.
The California native attended the UCLA School of Theatre, Film and Television and gained his first professional experience working behind the camera in 1964 on Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color. In the Army, he worked on training films. Early work included Little House on the Prairie, for which Burum shot MagiCam inserts. He shared a technical craft Emmy Award for the visual effects on 1980 PBS science program Cosmos.
In 1976, Burum worked as the second unit cameraman and director on Apocalypse Now, directed by Francis Ford Coppola, who he met at UCLA, and then on the second unit of The Black Stallion, directed by UCLA colleague Carroll Ballard. Burum’s first feature as a DP was 1982’s The Escape Artist, directed by Caleb Deschanel.
In the early ’80s, Burum again joined Coppola on The Outsiders and Rumble Fish. He also lensed Uncommon Valor, St. Elmo’s Fire and 8 Million Ways to Die. Burum went on to work with Danny DeVito, for whom he shot The War of the Roses and Hoffa.
The DP is best known for his collaboration with director Brian De Palma, with whom he made eight films including The Untouchables, Body Double, Casualties of War, Raising Cain, Carlito’s Way, Mission: Impossible, Snake Eyes and Mission to Mars.
A member of the American Society of Cinematographers, Burum received an ASC Award for Hoffa and additional nominations for The Untouchables and The War of the Roses. He was feted with the ASC Lifetime Achievement Award in 2008.
More recently, Burum returned to his roots by conducting film classes as part of the Kodak Cinematographer-in-Residence program at the UCLA Film School.