Riki Butland

Director, Director of Photography

Riki Butland 2 Sm

From early childhood I have always been inquisitive, always wanted to know the how and why of things.

I vividly remember the amazing pictures my mother used to take with her Rolleiflex twin reflex for Life magazine. How could she create such beauty and wonder from this camera? At 9 years old the only way to find out was obvious … just take the camera apart! My mother decided it would be far safer for both her equipment and her future employment to teach me the art. So began my passion for photography …

I paid my way through University by freelancing for the Daily Express, assisting top fashion and advertising photographers of the time. However, it took just one particular commission – ‘Go and shoot Roger Moore on the set of North Sea Hijack,’ – and I was hooked. It was not just the ‘romance’ of the movie set that inspired me; my excitement amidst this crazy collaborative process was around the wonderful use of light. Whatever it took, I was going to play a part in creating it.

I started spending time at Sammy’s, absorbing everything I could, however once on the road I realised a truth: a Director of Photography can only create inspired cinematography with a commitment to the homework required. For ten years I worked with numerous Directors of Photography on features, dramas and commercials, gaining a wealth of experience from a diversity of talent. In 1993 I got my first break as Director of Photography on a feature, I leapt at the challenge and have not looked back.

This is my craft. This is the art format where I belong. Always learning, always listening, watching and liasing with every department in this strange circus of collaboration. Trying to absorb the very best of what exists (the how and the why of childhood now stronger than ever), but also trying create something fresh, innovative and inspiring. After all, if we are not trying to break new ground, what right do we truly have in calling ourselves Filmmakers?

Finally My Red Dragon Cameras have arrived

These really are a game changer

Just started shooting MBC’s flagship drama Iglaa Edtirari

Just finished operating on the Splinter unit shooting all the car stunts and action for Fast & Furious 7 in Abu Dhabi


Also Two Feature films I was DoP on

“Tezz”  Directed by Priyadarshan


“Unforgettable” Directed by Arshad Pattan