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The Team Deakins podcast is an ongoing conversation between acclaimed cinematographer Roger Deakins and James Deakins, his collaborator, about cinematography, the film business and whatever other questions are submitted. We start with a specific question and end....who knows where! We are joined by guests periodically. Followup questions can be posted in the forums at

May 8, 2024


On this episode of the Team Deakins Podcast, VFX supervisor John Knoll (THE BATMAN, ROGUE ONE, PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN) joins us to talk about his career and his craft. Despite growing up among an academic family of engineers, scientists, and medical professionals, John fell in love with the fantastic imagery of cinema and television, and he saw miniature work as his way into filmmaking. From cold-calling Industrial Light & Magic at 15 to later working for them, John reflects on his life as one who turns hobbies into professions, and we learn how John fuses technology with art in his work. John reveals, with great clarity, how slit-scans are actually composed and shares how he used the effect to generate the illusion of the Starship Enterprise entering and exiting warp speed. We later discuss the leadership responsibilities of being a supervisor, including giving negative feedback in such a way that elevates a collaborator’s work. Towards the end, we also discuss the enduring appeal of miniatures for audiences and filmmakers alike. In addition to his work in VFX, John (alongside his brother Thomas) invented Photoshop, the popular photo-editing software used around the world.


This episode is sponsored by Godox