John DeTarsio


John DeTarsio is a Director and Director of Photography for scripted and non-scripted episodic TV, documentaries, and magazine shows. Among his credits is Director/D.P. of MTV’s Catfish, where he worked with Relativity Media and MTV to create a unique vérité multi-camera docu-reality look. (Director/D.P. all episodes).

His body of work encompasses highly-stylized shows, from CBS 48 Hours and MTV’s Suspect, to the premier network magazine show, CBS 60 Minutes, to multi-camera productions (like Coming Home, Lifetime, and Kid Nation, CBS), to the raw documentary style of MTV’s Catfish.

Excellence in lighting, directing, and photography have earned him recognition, including National EMMY Awards, DuPont Awards, Harvard Team Awards, and a National Iris Award.

After graduating from The University of Arizona in Tucson, Arizona, and before making the move into the freelance world more than 15 years ago, John spent his early years in local news as a photographer, editor, on-air reporter, and finally an Executive Producer. His last manager position was in San Diego, where John was Executive Producer of Creative Development at NBC.

While at NBC, John received the highest award in Photojournalism when he was named National Press Photographer of the Year by the National Press Photographer’s Association (NPPA). He has also been recognized for his contributions in photography, lighting, editing, writing, reporting and producing.

John has co-authored the premier college textbook, Television Field Production and Reporting with Frederick Shook and John Larson, as well as being featured in Roll! Shooting TV News, Views From Behind the Lens, by Rich Underwood.

John has been a consultant at TV networks in Canada, Ireland, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Korea, and Mongolia, working with photographers, editors, and lighting directors. John’s seminars and workshops cover everything from shooting and editing techniques, to lighting, to producing compelling stories.

Director/DP credits:

Episodic TV:

  • Catfish: The TV Show, MTV
  • Haircut Night in America, CBS
  • Celebrity Game Face,E!
  • The Blended’s, TLC
  • Get a Room, Bravo
  • Bringing up Bhabie, Snapchat
  • Girlfriends Check In, OWN
  • Working Vacation Nantucket, Bravo
  • The Great American Groom Along, Animal Planet
  • Hip Hop Mysteries: The death of Easy E, TLC
  • IRL (In Real Life), Bravo
  • KPop, (paid presentation) Amazon
  • Suspect, MTV
  • Catfish Untold Stories, MTV,
  • Coming Home, Lifetime
  • Picker Sisters, Lifetime
  • Carson Nation, OWN
  • Pretty Wicked Mom’s, Lifetime
  • Mortified Sessions, Season #1, Sundance
  • Kid Nation, CBS
  • Extreme Makeover, Home Edition, ABC, (family vacation segments)
  • Armed and Famous, CBS
  • CBS Special: Survivor, 20th Season Retrospective, CBS

Documentaries & News Magazines

  • 60 Minutes, CBS (D.P. more than 50 segments)
  • 48 Hours, CBS (D.P. more than 40 hour long episodes)
  • Three Days in September, Showtime, hosted by Julia Roberts, Showtime (D.P.)
  • Live to Tell, Black Wave, CBS (D.P.)
  • Dateline, NBC (D.P. more than 40 Segments)
  • ABC 20/20 (D.P. several segments)