Myrtle Creek, Ore. — Sept. 29, 2008 — The raw power of Iraqi war footage shot by cinematographer B. Sean Fairburn and featured in the Artbeats library has just been recognized with an Emmy Award following its extensive use in Dan Rather’s 2007 documentary “Combat Photographer.” Fairburn’s footage is available from Artbeats as part of the collection entitled “Road to Baghdad,” and can be viewed and purchased online by visiting www.artbeats.com/baghdad.
Fairburn was honored for Excellence in Cinematography at the 29th Annual News & Documentary Emmy Awards ceremony held Sept. 22 in New York. His dramatic footage was used throughout the “Combat Photographer” episode of “Dan Rather Reports” that aired in March 2007 on HDNet. Rather also interviewed Fairburn about his experiences as both a Marine and a war photographer.
A veteran of the first Gulf War, Fairburn was working as a cinematographer in Hollywood in 2003 when he was called up as a reserve with orders to shoot the war in Iraq. Using an HD camera mounted on the back of a Humvee, he accompanied U.S. troops as they engaged in extremely intense firefights and patrolled through the increasingly volatile streets of Baghdad neighborhoods. On the show, Rather told Fairburn that he had never seen such graphic footage of real combat, including several close calls.
“As part of the first wave of troops entering Iraq, this was one of the most exhilarating and terrifying shoots I’ve ever done,” says Fairburn. “Receiving the Emmy Award is very exciting, and to know that the courage of the Marines I served with in Iraq is receiving wider attention through Dan Rather’s show, the Emmy Award and distribution of the footage through Artbeats is very rewarding.”
Fairburn’s Iraq war footage has been available since 2005 through Artbeats, where he is a producer. The “Road to Baghdad” collection includes some of the Emmy Award-winning combat footage used in the “Dan Rather Reports” episode. Fairburn also provided footage of basic training and military life for the Artbeats collections “Tanks” and “Marines.” All three titles are available from Artbeats in both HD and SD formats at www.artbeats.com/fairburn.
“The first time we saw Sean’s Iraqi war footage, we knew we had to offer it to our customers,” says Phil Bates, president of Artbeats. “He is a very talented cinematographer, and the life-threatening conditions where he shot the footage in Iraq make it all the more impressive. We are thrilled about his Emmy Award win — it couldn’t have been given to a more deserving person.”