David Leitner is a director, producer, and Emmy-nominated DP (Chuck Close: Portrait in Progress), with over eighty credits in feature-length dramas and documentaries, including eight Sundance Film Festival premieres. These include his own Vienna is Different: 50 Years After the Anchluss, Alan Berliner’s Nobody’s Business, Sandi Dubowski’s Trembling Before G-d, the Oscar-nominated documentary For All Mankind for which he spent nine months at NASA’s Johnson Space Center restoring original 16mm lunar footage, and Memories of Overdevelopment, a Cuban follow-up to 1968’s classic Memories of Underdevelopment. His work has been seen on Showtime, Bravo, Sundance Channel, HBO, MTV, PBS, and distributed theatrically.
For 25 years as DP he has also photographed iconic writers, artists, and architects for hour-long documentaries produced by New York’s Checkerboard Film Foundation. Subjects include Brancusi, Picasso, Sir John Richardson, James Salter, Billy Collins, Joel Shapiro, Sir John Soane, Ellsworth Kelly, Milton Glaser, Daniel Libeskind, Dorothea Rockburne, Jack Lenor Larsen, Peter Eisenman, Roy Lichtenstein, Eric Fischl, Jeff Koons, and Sol LeWitt.
Additionally Leitner is an author, columnist, industry consultant, and speaker. From 1977-1985, he was a technical director, then Director of New Technology, at DuArt Film & Video in New York, where he created innovations in optical printing, camera lens testing, and film-to-tape transfer, and where he played a key role in the introduction of Super 16 to the U.S. From 1987-2010, he was senior contributing editor at Millimeter magazine. He is a Fellow of SMPTE and presently serves as Motion Picture Chair of the New York SMPTE Section.