Founder Member of the BSC
Bert Easey Head of Pinewood Camera Dept (camera right) with Colin Crowhurst Head of Pinewood Sound Dept.
BERT EASEY BSC
It was in 1947 that Bert Easey, then head of the Denham and Pinewood studio camera departments, first put forward the idea of forming a society of British cinematographers. Most of Britain’s distinguished cameramen were gathered for an industry dinner at the Orchard Hotel in Ruislip. Among the enthusiastic diners that night were such behind the camera luminaries as Georges Perinal, Desmond Dickinson, Guy Green, Robert Krasker, Harry Waxman, Otto Heller, George Hill, Jack Hildyard, Alex Tozer, Gordon Craig, Max Green, plus many other leading cameramen and representatives of various camera departments.
Bert Easey’s vision was that it would be a non-political guild or society, made up of feature production cameramen in the UK, based along similar lines to that of the prestigious American Society of Cinematographers which had been formed in 1919. With the enthusiastic approval of the assembled gathering and The British Society of Cinematographers Limited was born in September 1949.
Freddie Young, at the time chief cameraman at MGM in Borehamwood, took the chair as the first president. Bert Easey was elected secretary and treasurer. Guy Green took on the role of vice-president and Jack Cardiff, Lovat Cave Chinn, Desmond Dickinson and Derick Williams were elected to the board.
The BSC Bert Easey Technical Award was named in honour of Bert’s tireless energy and unflagging enthusiasm that brought about the birth of the BSC. The award is a gift of the Board of Governors and only given to an individual or company who has contributed something outstanding in the way of endeavour or equipment. The initial award went to George Ashworth, Chief Engineer, Denham and Pinewood Studios, for outstanding work in designing and perfecting a beam splitter camera which advanced the technique of the travelling matte process.