2011 Honorees and Honorable Mentions

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Honorees

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A collection of highlights from all of the 2011 honorees.

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Yueni Zander

AC
Dead Grass, Dry Roots

Yueni Zander was born and raised in Germany, and came to Los Angeles to attend American Film Institute. After graduating with a bachelor of fine arts, she interned with KC Video Productions and Leftfield Pictures and worked as a PA on a reality TV show. She joined Local 600 in 2005, and was mentored by Bobby Mancuso and Scott Tinsley. Dead Grass, Dry Roots is a period Western that examines the classic dichotomy between man's law and natural justice, juxtaposing the clash of modern values with the violent mythology of the Old West. The main character must decide whether to allow the law to take its course or to prevent a young man from suffering an unjust death. The main character's own son died in a similarly unjust manner.

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Alison Kelly

First AC
Spring of Sorrow

Alison Kelly is a camera assistant who hails from Cleveland, Ohio. She loved photography from childhood and eventually studied at America Film Institute in Los Angeles. She joined in the union in 1996 after starting off as an animation assistant, and later was mentored by Ellen Kuras, ASC, and Anthony Jannelli.

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Stefan Tarzan

First AC
Absaroka

First assistant Stefan Tarzan grew up in Olympia, Washington, and decided to pursue a career in filmmaking after seeing Star Wars, Jaws and other classics of that era. He earned a bachelor’s degree in film production at Montana State University in Bozeman and interned at a commercial house in Seattle before moving to Los Angeles.

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Gregory Wilson

DIT
Somewhere Else

Gregory Wilson is a digital imaging technician who grew up in a tiny town in Vermont. He spent six years as a pro snowboarder. Professional snowboarders are often filmed and videotaped for sponsors, for action sports productions that air on television and on the Internet, and for the snowboarders themselves, who use the recordings to critique and improve their technique. During that time, Wilson met and spoke to many filmmakers and photographers, and became interested in their craft. Later, he took stills for rock music magazines, which led to shooting music videos with a 16mm camera.

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Steve Romano

AC
String Theory

Camera assistant Steve Romano grew up in Brooklyn, the son of a commercial artist and a mother who painted as a hobby. He took film and television production classes at Queens College, and today he is well-versed on the Vision Research Phantom high-speed camera, which was used on String Theory.

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Michael Nie

2nd AC
Not Your Time

During long winters growing up in Wisconsin, 2nd AC Michael Nie told stories with images using a Super 8 camera. After college, he came to Los Angeles with the help of gaffer Michael Bauman. Nie counts Mauro Fiore, ASC, as a mentor, friend and inspiration who has helped him value a balance between career and life outside of work.

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David Mahlman

Operator
Numb

Los Angeles-based camera operator David Mahlman grew up in the Chicago area. He became interested in photography and movies at a young age, and studied filmmaking at Columbia College-Chicago and at the Rockport Maine Workshops. He worked as a camera assistant for more than 10 years before making the leap to camera operator. He joined the Guild in 2000.

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Joseph Arena

Operator
Applebox

Camera operator Joseph Arena was born and raised in Rome, Italy. Starting at age 12, he made movies with his friends on the weekends with a camera that was a gift from his parents. He started cinema school at age 14 at the Istituto di Stato per la Cinematografia e la televisione "Roberto Rossellini" and graduated in 1996. After working as a PA and then as a camera assistant for several years, he moved to Los Angeles in 2003, eventually joining Local 600.

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Honorable Mentions

Abraham Martinez

2nd AC
Little Candy Hearts

Abe Martinez credits The Killing Fields with planting the seed for a future in moving images. He majored in TV/film at the University of North Texas in Denton. He worked in various camera houses, which led to mentorship with Ralf Bode, ASC, and Michael Stone.Abe Martinez credits The Killing Fields with planting the seed for a future in moving images. He majored in TV/film at the University of North Texas in Denton. He worked in various camera houses, which led to mentorship with Ralf Bode, ASC, and Michael Stone.

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Brian O'Carroll

Operator
8 For Infinity

Brian O’Carroll is a native of Dublin with two decades of experience in the New York documentary, music video, and commercial production worlds. He was previously recognized with an ECA nod in 2007 for Cherry Bloom.

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