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Jean-Pierre Beauviala 22 juillet 1937 8 April 2019
  • The French engineer, inventor, architect, and founder of Aaton, Jean-Pierre Beauviala died 8 April 2019 at age 81. In memory of the revolutionary Aaton cameras or Cantar audio recorders, here is our tribute to a one-of-his-kind motion picture genius.

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  • This tribute by Philippe Piron nicely sums up Mr. Beauviala's incredible contributions to filmmaking (French): Translation:

  • I shot and/or directed numerous films with a Super16 Aaton. Wonderful camera: quiet, light, easy to load and reliable. The rental house in Toronto matched it with Cooke zooms. Beautiful piece of kit.

  • I worked with many film cameras, 16 & 35, as a camera assistant and later cinematographer. A few rental house employees in NYC spoke with glee about having met "Jean-Pierre". My early low budget jobs often involved loading and pulling focus on the DP's personal Eclair NPR or Aaton LTR (among other cameras). The Aaton was the documentary cameras of choice at the time and the Abel brothers (Abel Cine Tech) started a rental and now sales empire with the Aaton camera.

    This film was posted on a Facebook group and Jean-Pierre is featured. It's the first time I have ever seen him or heard his voice. He explains the technical achievement of making the Aaton quiter, it seems small but it was very significant. These guys paved the way, for what we have today. The film reminded me how fortunate we are today (despite all discussions about missing features) with the current tools (camera, audio & non-linear editing), which are flawless compared to 60 years ago: compact, light weight, sync sound, color, long recording times (more than 20 seconds, 3 minutes, 10 minutes -as film mags would allow) AND some can fit in your pocket! Here's where we came from: