Sean Bobbitt

Sean Francis Bobbitt, B.S.C. (born 29 November 1958) is an American-born British cinematographer.[1]

Early lifeEdit

Sean Bobbitt was born in Corpus Christi, Texas on 29 November 1958.[1]


Bobbitt started his career as a news and documentary cameraman, a role which took him to the most conflicted spots of the globe.

In 2008, Bobbitt worked with artist-turned-director Steve McQueen on British film Hunger, a hard-hitting film about the Northern Irish hunger striker, Bobby Sands. With this film Bobbitt, McQueen, editor Joe Walker and actor Michael Fassbender formed a collaborative award-winning team that have gone on to make a further two films, Shame and 12 Years a Slave. Bobbitt won a BIFA in 2008 for his work on Hunger. He was again nominated in 2011 for Shame, starring Academy Award nominee Carey Mulligan alongside Fassbender. In 2012, Bobbitt won the Carlo Di Palma European Cinematographer of the Year Award at the European Film Awards for his work on Shame.[2]

In 2011, Bobbitt worked on the pilot of HBO's acclaimed series Game of Thrones. The following year, Bobbitt completed filming on The Place Beyond the Pines, which stars Ryan Gosling, Bradley Cooper, Eva Mendes and Ray Liotta, a film starring Saoirse Ronan, Gemma Arterton and Jonny Lee Miller called Byzantium, and he concluded five years of working on Michael Winterbottom drama-film Everyday. In early 2013, he completed work on Oldboy, the Spike Lee-directed American remake of the 2003 South Korean film of the same name. The end of 2013 saw the release of 12 Years a Slave, for which he received multiple cinematography award nominations, and which ultimately won the coveted Best Picture Award at the 2014 Oscars.

Over the next few years, he worked on Kill the Messenger with Jeremy Renner, Rock the Kasbah with Bill Murray, Queen of Katwe with David Oyelowo, On Chesil Beach with Saoirce Ronan, Stronger with Jake Gyllenhaal. In 2018, he collaborated with McQueen again on heist movie Widows.

In 2019, he shot Judas and the Black Messiah for which he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Cinematography. The film was released on HBO Max in 2021, having been postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In 2021, Bobbitt filmed The Marvels, directed by Nia DiCosta.



  Denotes films that have not yet been released
Year Title Director Notes
1999 Wonderland Michael Winterbottom
2001 Chunky Monkey Greg Cruttwell
Lawless Heart Tom Hunsinger
Neil Hunter
2002 Summer Things Michel Blanc
2006 Cargo Clive Gordon
The Situation Philip Haas
2007 The Baker Gareth Lewis
Mrs Ratcliffe's Revolution Bille Eltringham
2008 Hunger Steve McQueen
2010 Africa United Debs Gardner-Paterson
2011 Shame Steve McQueen
Hysteria Tanya Wexler
2012 Everyday Michael Winterbottom
The Place Beyond the Pines Derek Cianfrance
Byzantium Neil Jordan
Trashed Candida Brady Documentary
2013 12 Years a Slave Steve McQueen Independent Spirit Award for Best Cinematography
St. Louis Gateway Film Critics Association Award for Best Cinematography
Nominated – ASC Award for Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography in Theatrical Releases
Nominated – BAFTA Award for Best Cinematography
Nominated – Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Cinematography
Nominated – Critics' Choice Movie Award for Best Cinematography
Nominated – Dallas–Fort Worth Film Critics Association Award for Best Cinematography
Nominated – Houston Film Critics Society Award for Best Cinematography
Nominated – National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Cinematography
Nominated – Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Cinematography
Nominated – San Francisco Film Critics Circle Award for Best Cinematography
Nominated – Satellite Award for Best Cinematography
Nominated – Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association Award for Best Cinematography
Oldboy Spike Lee
2014 Kill the Messenger Michael Cuesta
2015 Rock the Kasbah Barry Levinson
2016 Queen of Katwe Mira Nair
2017 On Chesil Beach Dominic Cooke
Stronger David Gordon Green
2018 Widows Steve McQueen
2020 The Courier Dominic Cooke
The Rhythm Section Reed Morano
2021 Judas and the Black Messiah Shaka King Nominated – Academy Award for Best Cinematography
Nominated – BAFTA Award for Best Cinematography
Nominated – Black Reel Award for Outstanding Cinematography
2023 The Marvels   Nia DaCosta Filming


Year Title Director Notes
1994 Watergate Mick Gold Mini-Series documentary
1998 Ancient Inventions Daniel Percival
Phil Grabsky
2001 The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby Stephen Whittaker TV movie
Sweet Revenge David Morrissey
2002 Spooks Rob Bailey Episodes: "One Last Dance" and "Traitor's Gate"
Jeffrey Archer: The Truth Guy Jenkin TV movie
2003 Second Generation Jon Sen
The Canterbury Tales Marc Munden
Julian Jarrold
Episodes "The Knight's Tale" and "The Man of Law's Tale"
2004 The Long Firm Bille Eltringham Mini-Series
2008 Sense and Sensibility John Alexander
2009 Unforgiven David Evans
2016 Codes of Conduct Steve McQueen

Short filmsEdit

Year Title Director
2000 Maisie's Catch Dan Weldon
2001 Dog Andrea Arnold
Ladies Night Caroline Hicks
2002 Western Deep Steve McQueen
2004 Charlotte
2006 Normal for Norfolk Gareth Lewis
2007 Weddings and Beheadings Amir Jamal
Gravesend Steve McQueen
2009 The Death of Pentheus Philip Haas
Static Steve McQueen
2016 Mr. Burberry


  1. ^ a b "Sean Bobbitt". IMDb. Retrieved 4 March 2014.[better source needed]
  2. ^ "Joe Walker and Sean Bobbitt are awarded for their work on Shame".

External linksEdit