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WildFilmHistory » Home » Films » Camera Magic: Images of Nature

Camera Magic: Images of Nature  (1989)

A fascinating peak behind the scenes of wildlife filmmaking, this special takes a look at the group of scientists-turned-filmmakers at Oxford Scientific Films (OSF), and reveals the secrets behind how they succeeded in capturing the mysteries of nature on film.

Narrated by Dudley Moore, Camera Magic focuses primarily on the work of the ‘compulsive inventor’ Peter Parks and his colleagues Sean Morris and Ian Moar, telling the story behind the creation of OSF. From the original inspiration, Gerald Thompson’sThe Alder Woodwasp and its Insect Enemies’, Camera Magic shows the motivation behind the creation of the Academy Award-winning ‘optical bench’, the development of incredible high-speed and time-lapse photography, and the use of special effects for television specials, commercials, music videos and feature films.

Highlighting the need for a great deal of time, patience and indeed luck, the OSF filmmakers expand the limits of film and capture many wondrous natural sights, from a water shrew giving birth, to flowers bursting into bloom, and ‘killer cucumbers’ that disperse seeds by explosive methods.

Film credits

Assistant Camera: Richard Schutte
Assistant Camera: Amanda Thompson
Assistant Camera: Bob Poole
Associate Producer: Susan McCoy
Associate Producer: Oxford Scientific Films Ltd.
Designer: Bob Dalla Piazza
Director of Photography: Mark Knobil
Editor: David E. Gerber
Executive Producer: Thomas Skinner
Film Transfers: Marty Skoff
Managing Director: Karen Goldie-Morrison
Music: Jack K. Tillar
Music: William Loose
Narrator: Dudley Moore
Photography: Peter Parks
Photography: Sean Morris
Photography: Ian Moar
Photography: Tim Shepherd
Photography: John Cooke
Photography: David Shale
Photography: John Paling
Photography: Gerald Thompson
Photography: David Thompson
Photography: Steve Brooke-Smith
Photography: Jim Frazier
Photography: James Gray
Photography: Tony Allen
Post Production Sound: Bob Millslagle
Presenter: Dudley Moore
Producer: David E. Gerber
Production Assistant: Jenny Cadish
Production Liaison: Emma Peddie
Production Liaison: Jane Mulleneux
Production Liaison: Nicholas Unsworth
Production Organisation: WQED, Pittsburgh
Production Supervisor: John Cosgrove
Production Support: Casey Brown
Production Support: John Butler
Production Support: Wayne Gaines
Production Support: Susan Howard
Production Support: Cheryl Romanik
Production Support: Karen Pie
Project Director: Chris Fennimore
Promotion: Pam Golden
Rights & Clearances: Catherine Blue
Sound Effects: Clifford Hoelscher
Sound Recording: Ken Love
Sound Recording: Robbie Robinson
Sound Recording: Bruce Peters
Studio Grip: Frank Warninsky
Unit Manager: Steve LeSage
VT (video tape) Editor: Paul Byers
Writer: David E. Gerber

Related links

Look: The Alder Woodwasp and its Insect Enemies (1960)
Peter Parks
Sean Morris
Gerald Thompson