Stephen Low is recognized by audiences and peers as one of the world’s foremost large format filmmakers. His creative vision, storytelling ability and commitment to cinematic innovation, together with his persistence on complex and large-scale projects, have yielded an extraordinary body of work enjoyed by audiences around the world. His career spans more than three decades and his filmography includes more than 17 giant screen films and award-winning work for television.
Stephen’s output encompasses a remarkable diversity of themes, from science and nature, to history and human affairs, to sports and drama, but he never seems to tackle the simple subjects. This Ottawa-born filmmaker has put audiences into the cockpit of a screamingly fast Indy car (Super Speedway) and into a fighter jet (Fighter Pilot) and he’s pioneered production in the revolutionary IMAX 3D medium. He is also one of a relatively small number of human beings privileged to have traveled to the abyssal depths of the ocean—first, to film the wreck site of the Titanic for Titanica (1991), and then to the Mid Ocean Ridge to tell the story of the discovery and scientific exploration of hydrothermal vents in Volcanoes of the Deep Sea (2003).
In the challenging field of IMAX filmmaking, Stephen has set himself apart—demonstrating a stellar ability to marry an independent creative vision with the capacity to manage the opportunities and risks of using the world’s largest and most expensive film format (the “15/70” format specific to the IMAX® system). Virtually every project he has undertaken has also involved the invention or harnessing of some remarkable new innovation in technology or filming technique: from filming birds in flight, to mounting an IMAX camera on a steam locomotive or an Indy car; from integrating high-powered HMI cinema lights into deep sea submersibles, to collaborating with leading animators to shape sequences using the revolutionary SANDDE stereo drawing and animation system; or bringing archival 19th-century stereo glass-plate photographs to life on the IMAX screen. Stephen has been recognized with important career honours and his films have earned a host of awards around the world.