Leading Latin American cinematographer Manuel Branaa is proving he has what it takes to make dreams come true, both on camera and off.
Manuel’s coveted skills as a cinematographer have placed him in the lucky group of people who get paid to travel to do what they love. “I just finished rapping the film ‘Alive’ by director Heran Hao. The entire film was shot in China and the experience was awesome, ” said Branaa.
Working alongside Max Payne and A Good Day To Die Hard director John Moore on Dublin heartthrob Colin Devlin’s music video for ‘The Heart Won’t Be Denied’, Manuel showed he has what it takes to play ball with the big boys. “Having the chance to work with John Moore and other big name directors came as proof that my dreams of being a successful cinematographer had finally turned into reality?” said Branaa.
Manuel’s work on the award winning film 725 is another testament to his success as a cinematographer. An Official Selection at the Cannes Court Metrage Film Festival, Irawati Athalye’s 725 is a dark film that exposes viewers to the tragic life of a woman enslaved in sex trafficking against her will.
When it comes to working as the director of photography Manuel knows first hand how integral his role is to the success of any production. “My job is to be the directors eyes, I always have to be two steps ahead of the camera so that I can direct my crew accordingly,” said Branaa.
Manuel’s work as the DP on the music video ‘Running Days’ by Argentina’s beloved rock group Bonson Berner speaks volumes about his expertise in the field. Using various camera angles and almost shaky shot changes Manuel creates a scene that flows seamlessly with the song’s choppy upbeat rhythm. The drastic differences between his work on ‘Running Days’ and the music video for the band Bungee’s hit song ‘Descarrilado’ are proof that Manuel does not follow habitual patterns with his work, but instead attacks every project with originality.
Whether he’s using lighting to set the mood or directing camera operators on where to capture the best angle, this talented cinematographer has an eye for everything camera related.
Here in the U.S. Manuel is slated to begin work on the upcoming series “On The High Note”, a documentary-series that will take viewers behind the scenes of the musical theatre industry in Hollywood. Spearheaded by SIAS Productions, the series, which will document the lives of those who live and work in theatre, is scheduled to begin production this spring. He is also scheduled to begin work on the feature film Blue Hell in 2015. Manuel definitely has a busy road ahead, but he’s making dreams come true every step of the way.