Legend Behind the Camera

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Camera operator Sakamoto receives lifetime achievement award.

P. Scott Sakamoto has worked in the motion picture industry for 35 years.

P. Scott Sakamoto received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society of Camera Operators in Hollywood Feb. 3.

Sakamoto was honored for his work on the 2015 film “The Revenant,” starring Leonardo DiCaprio.

The presenter was Oscar-winning director of photography Wally Pfister (“Inception,” 2010). During his senior year of film school at Cal State Long Beach, Sakamoto was fortunate to meet and work with two-time Academy Award-winning cinematographer Haskell Wexler. It was the start of a lifelong friendship with Wexler and a successful film career for Sakamoto.

In 2016, Sakamoto was named Camera Operator of the Year by the Society of Camera Operators for his work on “The Revenant.” The British Society of Cinematographers honored him that year as well for “The Revenant.” He has been nominated a total of five times for his work. Over the course of 35 years, Sakamoto has worked around the world on major motion pictures with a wide variety of actors, including Sophia Loren, Paul Newman, Julia Roberts, George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Tom Hanks, Angelina Jolie, Tom Cruise, Julie Andrews and Leonardo DiCaprio.

P. Scott Sakamoto with his mom Emy Sakamoto (left), wife Lori Petitti and sister Sandy Sakamoto.

He was the camera operator on not only “The Revenant” but also “Road to Perdition,” both of which won Academy Awards for cinematography.

He recently finished work on “A Star Is Born” with Bradley Cooper and is currently working with director Martin Scorsese on a film in New York City starring Robert De Niro. His nearly 100 major film credits include “Enemy of the State,” “National Treasure,” “Anna and the King,” “Labor Day,” “Michael Clayton,” “Salt,” “Pretty in Pink,” “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” “The Usual Suspects,” “The Patriot,” “The Princess Diaries,” “The Dark Knight Rises,” “The Italian Job,” “Interstellar,” and the soon-to-be-released “Black Panther.”

His mom, Emy Sakamoto, sister, Sandy Sakamoto, and her husband, Nolan Maehara, were at the award ceremony. Sakamoto lives in Santa Monica with his wife, Lori Petitti, a producer.

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