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Curriculum Vitae: Caleb Deschanel

Photo of Caleb Deschanel by Phil Konstanin


  • 1966 Bachelor’s degree, liberal arts, Johns Hopkins University
  • 1968 Master’s degree, film studies, University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts
  • 1969 Cinematography fellow, American Film Institute


  • He has been nominated for five Academy Awards.
  • In 2010, he was given a Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Society of Cinematographers.
  • In 2014, he was given a Lifetime Achievement Award from Poland’s Camerimage Film Festival.
  • His introduction to photography came at the age of 11, when he received a Brownie Hawkeye camera
  • He was inspired by Hopkins professors such as Dick Macksey, who involved Deschanel and other students in producing a 16mm film for a class, and Chaplain Emeritus Chester Wickwire, who organized on-campus screenings of art films.
  • While at Johns Hopkins, Deschanel was the co-editor and photographer for Johns Hopkins News-Letter and a photographer for the yearbook.

(a sample)

  • The Black Stallion (1979)
  • Being There (1979)
  • The Right Stuff (1983)
  • The Natural (1984)
  • Fly Away Home (1996)
  • Hope Floats (1998)
  • The Patriot (2000)
  • The Passion of the Christ (2004)
  • My Sister’s Keeper (2009)
  • Winter’s Tale (2014)
  • Unforgettable (2017)


  • Twin Peaks
  • Law & Order: Trial by Jury, Conviction
  • Bones

In His Own Words

“Movies at their best can inspire us to be better human beings. Any great literature does the same thing—gives us insight and understanding of people and a different perspective on life—so why should film be different?”
Markee 2.0 Magazine

“To make a movie, you have to have an incredible drive and enthusiasm for something.”
Hollywood Reporter

“Look at visual images as much as you can, whether it’s paintings, photographs, or movies, and shoot as much as you can. I’m still learning every time I shoot a frame of film. When I’m not learning, I will know that it’s time to quit.”
—Caleb Deschanel’s advice to aspiring filmmakers