and do better next time? It’s all part of the journey; part of pushing yourself and taking chances – not just taking the path of least resistance. Whenever you do that, you’re going to risk failure. Something I appreciate about Todd Phillips – who I’ve done seven movies with, including Joker – is he’s always taking risks. We’ve got the new Joker coming out next year and we’re just finishing up post-production on it. This movie is a big swing and it’s going to be really surprising to people. I’m so excited for everyone to see it. Def: What career ambitions would you still like to fulfil? LS: I want to direct again, definitely – I’ve continued to refine that skill so I would like to revisit it. From a shooting standpoint, I want to find things that scare me, things that feel like a creative challenge, and to work with really interesting people. I’m going to continue to seek out those opportunities. I’ve also got a venture called ShotDeck, which is a really incredible database of imagery for filmmakers. Starting that has been a really fun challenge, feeding that economics brain of mine that went to college, and doing something more entrepreneurial – I’ve learned a whole bunch of new skills and that I didn’t even know I had to learn. It’s really fulfilling, and it’s become really a great tool for filmmakers, students and for people across all creative industries. It was something that needed to exist, and it’s great to see it succeed. Def: Is there anything you’d do differently in your career if you had the chance? LS: It’s such a good question. And it’s funny because I really can’t think of anything – I take all the ups and downs, and even if something didn’t feel great in the moment or I felt I failed in some
ONWARD AND UPWARD Sher on set (above), The Hangover (below) and Asteroid City, nominated in the Colour Awards (right)
way, I usually learn something. There are so many things you can’t control; all you can do is continue to work on yourself as a human being. Def: What motivates you? LS: For me, now, it’s all about taking some level of risk, and feeling inspired by the work that I’m doing. That’s it. Whenever I’m presented with something, I have to find that thing that makes me feel challenged and excited and inspired. And if that’s present, then it’s worth doing – and it gets me excited about that project from beginning to end. Def: What do you think are the biggest challenges and opportunities facing the industry as a whole at the moment? LS: Obviously, there are things like AI – I’m not as worried about it as others; I feel like it’ll have a place, but time will tell how that looks. The big one for me – since 90% of what I do is make movies for the theatre – is to make sure this generation continues to embrace all the things that make the theatre great. The Barbie and Oppenheimer thing was great, and those things get me excited. I want to make sure the whole experience of going to see a film on a big screen, with popcorn and other people, doesn’t falter; that it lives on. Covid-19 scared the hell out of me for that reason, but it’s been nice to see people return to the theatre.
FilmLight Colour Awards Sher discusses his seat on the panel for the awards, which celebrate the art of colour in film and TV “I was really excited to be asked to be part of the jury for the awards. I know it will be an immense challenge to help filter all the other jurors’ opinions into consensus winners. Colour is complex and subjective, so my goal is to allow an open forum in which we can express our thoughts on the work of the artists. When it comes to judging, first and foremost, I will be looking for entries that show point of view and skilful execution of an idea. As with all filmmaking endeavours, the art needs to work seamlessly with the piece.” The 2023 winners will be announced at EnergaCAMERIMAGE. For the latest on the FilmLight Colour Awards, visit filmlightcolourawards.com
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