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Cooke Optics Limited To Be Honored At Oscar Ceremony

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences says the British company gets an award of merit because it "helped define the look of motion pictures over the last century." Its innovations over the years have included zoom lenses for movie cameras and lenses that didn't require bright lights. The lenses produce what's known in the industry as the "Cooke look" — warm, natural images on the screen.

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Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And let's consider the technology behind movie-making. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has not made its Oscar nominations yet, but it has already announced some awards in the technical category.

DAVID GREENE, BYLINE: And one of the Oscars goes to Cooke Optics Limited. The Academy says the British company gets an award of merit because it helped define the look of motion pictures over the last century. Its innovations over the years have included zoom lenses for movie cameras and lenses that don't require bright light.

INSKEEP: The lenses produce what's known in the industry as the Cooke look, warm natural images on the screen. From Charlie Chaplin to "Gone With The Wind," James Bond and Harry Potter, the lenses have been an important part of Hollywood since the early days of film. The cameramen who accompanied Edmund Hillary to Mount Everest and Ernest Shackleton to Antarctica used them too.

GREENE: Cooke Optics will receive its Oscar on February 9. That is a couple of weeks ahead of the big Academy Awards broadcast. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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