Cinematographer (and Executive Producer) Oktay Ortabasi is first in our series of profiles on cast & crew from THE MILLENNIUM BUG.
A director of photography for more than 15 years, Oktay has worked with MTV, VH1, Travel Channel, Animal Planet, NBC, HGTV, PBS and more. Most recently, Oktay lensed the $100,000 grand prize winning Go-Daddy.com commercial. He produced, directed, and filmed the OMNI-award winning documentary On the Wings of the Monarch, which aired on The Documentary Channel. He has lensed 8 feature films including Fuel (which he also directed), a film festival winner and Official Selection at many film festivals nationwide. Other works include the internationally distributed feature films A Lousy 10 Grand and Anderson’s Cross, (which won the Barbados International Film Festival, the Hollywood Black Film Festival and Atlanta Black Film Festival) and more than 20 short films, including multiple-festival winner Cocoa Love. His commercial for Deutsch won the EMA Creative Excellence Award.
Oktay is the co-founder of The Dreaming Tree, where he works as a director and cinematographer on projects ranging from independent shorts and features to documentaries, music videos, commercials, and more. You can view his reels here or visit him on IMDB.
Oktay’s recollections of his work on The Millennium Bug:
Jim asked me if I would be interested in working on a horror film with him and his brother. I figured it would be a 20-day shoot with maybe a week of pickups. We shot for 85 days! I remember when we set up the ghost town for eight hours before we shot anything. Then we rolled the camera. The shot was about four seconds long. We watched play back, and Ken wasn’t happy. So we rebuilt for another four hours to try the shot again! But no matter how hard things got, it was a blast working on this film.