Mikael Salomon

Mikael Salomon (born 24 February 1945) is a Danish-born cinematographer,[1] director and producer[2] of film and television. After a long cinematography career in Danish cinema, he transitioned to the Hollywood film industry in the late 1980s[3][4][5] earning two Academy Award nominations.[6] He is also a television director whose credits include dozens of series, films and miniseries including Band of Brothers, Salem's Lot, Rome, and The Andromeda Strain. His awards and nominations include a Primetime Emmy Award and a Directors Guild of America Award.

Mikael Salomon
Born (1945-02-24) 24 February 1945
television director
television producer
film director
Years active1963–present
OrganizationDirector's Guild of America
American Society of Cinematographers
AwardsAcademy Award
Primetime Emmy Award
Christopher Award
Bodil Awards
Robert Award

Life and career

Born in Copenhagen, Denmark, Salomon photographed dozens of films in his native country, earning awards including the Robert Award and Bodil Awards. In the late 1980s, he relocated to Hollywood and shot his first mainstream American film with Torch Song Trilogy, a 1988 comedy-drama starring Harvey Fierstein, Anne Bancroft, and Matthew Broderick. The following year, he shot the James Cameron-helmed science fiction film The Abyss, a film that helped to pioneer the field of computer-generated visual effects.[7][8][9] Salomon used three cameras in watertight housings that were specially designed.[10] Another special housing was designed for scenes that went from above-water dialogue to below-water dialogue. The filmmakers had to figure out how to keep the water clear enough to shoot and dark enough to look realistic at 2,000 feet (700 m), which was achieved by floating a thick layer of plastic beads in the water and covering the top of the tank with an enormous tarpaulin.[10] His work on the film earned Salomon a nomination for an Academy Award for Best Cinematography.

In the following years, Salomon shot several blockbuster films like Always, Backdraft, and Far and Away, collaborating with directors like Steven Spielberg and Ron Howard.

In 1993, Salomon directed A Far Off Place, an adventure drama film filmed on location in Namibia and Zimbabwe, replacing original director René Manzor after being recommended to producer Kathleen Kennedy by Steven Spielberg. That same year, he directed an episode of the short-lived science fiction series Space Rangers, beginning a career as a television directors. In 1998, he directed the Emmy-nominated Aftershock: Earthquake in New York, the first in many television miniseries which Salomon would helm. The most notable of these was Band of Brothers, a 10-part series executive produced by Spielberg for which Salomon won a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special and a Christopher Award.

Since then, Salomon has over thirty-five programs, including the miniseries adaptations of The Andromeda Strain and Coma broadcast on the A&E Network.

Personal life

Salomon is of Jewish descent on one parent's side.[11]

Selected filmography


Year Title Notes
1993 Space Rangers 1 episode
1998 Nash Bridges
1999 Aftershock: Earthquake in New York Miniseries
2 episodes
2000 The Fugitive 2 episodes
Sole Survivor Television film
2001 A Glimpse of Hell
Alias 1 episode
Band of Brothers Miniseries
2 episodes


The Agency 3 episodes
2002 Young Arthur Television film
2003 Benedict Arnold: A Question of Honor
2004 Salem's Lot Miniseries
2 episodes
The Grid Miniseries
6 episodes
2005 Over There 1 episode
Rome 3 episodes
2006 Fallen Miniseries
1 episode
Nightmares & Dreamscapes 2 episodes
Runaway Pilot episode
2007 The Company 6 episodes

Nominated for:

2008 Flirting with Forty Television film
Natalee Holloway
The Andromeda Strain Miniseries
4 episodes

Nominated for:

2009 Hawthorne Pilot episode
2010 Who Is Clark Rockefeller? Television film
Unnatural History 2 episodes

Nominated for:

The Lost Future Television film
2011 Camelot 3 episodes
2012 Drew Peterson: Untouchable Television film
Blue Lagoon: The Awakening Television film
Coma Miniseries
2 episodes
2014 Falling Skies Pilot episode
Big Driver Television film
2015 Blood & Oil 1 episode
2015-16 Powers 5 episodes
2016 Damien 1 episode
2017 Six 2 episodes
The Expanse
Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders 1 episode
2018 The Brave 1 episode


As Cinematographer

Year Title Dir. Notes
1987 The Man Who Broke 1,000 Chains Daniel Mann Won:
1988 Torch Song Trilogy Paul Bogart
It's Impossible to Learn to Plow by Reading Books Richard Linklater
Zelly and Me Tina Rathborne
1989 The Abyss James Cameron Nominated for:
Always Steven Spielberg
1990 Arachnophobia Frank Marshall
1991 Backdraft Ron Howard Nominated for:
1992 Far and Away

As Director

Year Title DP. Notes
1993 A Far Off Place Juan Ruiz Anchía
1998 Hard Rain Peter Menzies Jr.
2014 Freezer John Dyer Direct-to-video

Awards and nominations




  1. Hollywood.com
  2. En travl dag i Los Angeles. Portræt: Mikael Salomon, fotograf. Politiken | 11.01.1994 | 2. sektion | Side 3 |
  3. Den danske kong Salomon. Portræt/interview: Mikael Salomon. Politiken | 25.08.1993 | 2. sektion | Side 1
  4. Savner hygge og rugbrød. Portræt: Mikael Salomon. Ekstra Bladet | 22.08.1993 | 2. sektion | Side 4
  5. Dansker til tops i Hollywood. Portræt af filmfotografen Mikael Salomon. Politiken | 01.01.1990 | 2. sektion | Side 2
  6. Succes på strømer. Portræt/interview: Mikael Salomon. Ekstra Bladet | 01.04.1999 | Skærtorsdag | Side 24
  7. "The Making of 'The Abyss'". www.aspaceblogyssey.com. Retrieved 2017-09-01.
  8. SEMLYEN, PHIL DE. "A History Of CGI In The Movies". Empire. Retrieved 2017-09-01.
  9. "The Abyss: The Ultimate James Cameron Movie?". Den of Geek. Retrieved 2017-09-01.
  10. Blair September 1989, p. 58.
  11. 'No sugarcoating’ as first movie on ’67 battle for Jerusalem takes shape.' Hoffman, Jordan. The Times of Israel. www.timesofisrael.com. Published June 9, 2014. Accessed October 16, 2017.
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