(written from a Production point of view)
Cunningham began his career as the art department coordinator on the 1995 science fiction thriller Species (which featured Jordan Lund, David Selburg, William Utay and Herta Ware in the cast). His art department team on this film included DS9/Star Trek: First Contact illustrator Ricardo Delgado and veteran Star Trek foreman Tom Talley. Cunningham then worked as a set designer and assistant art director on several films before becoming a full-fledged art director. His early set design work could be seen in such films as The Baby-Sitters Club (featuring Bruce Davison, Scarlett Pomers, and Harris Yulin), A Time to Kill (featuring Ashley Judd and Kurtwood Smith), and That Thing You Do! (featuring Bill Cobbs, Clint Howard, Holmes Osborne, and Sean Whalen).
From 1998 through 2002, Cunningham frequently worked with director Steven Soderbergh. Cunningham was a set designer on Soderbergh's 1998 crime drama Out of Sight. He then re-teamed with Soderbergh as an assistant art director on the 2000 award-winning drama Erin Brockovich (whose cast included William Lucking, Scarlett Pomers, Tracey Walter, and Wade Williams). Another acclaimed Soderbergh film released that year, Traffic, marked Cunningham's first work as a supervising art director. Cunningham was nominated for a Golden Satellite Award for his work on this film. He worked with Soderbergh again on 2001's Ocean's Eleven (for which he was nominated for an Excellence in Production Design Award from the Art Director's Guild) and 2002's Solaris (which had John Cho and Michael Ensign in the cast).
Cunningham's other art direction credits include M. Night Shyamalan's Signs, the 2004 blockbuster Van Helsing, and the 2005 musical Rent.
Star Trek is the fourth film on which Cunningham has worked with set designer Dawn Brown. The two first worked together as set designers on 1997's Batman & Robin. Cunningham has since supervised Brown on the aforementioned Ocean's Eleven and Solaris and, most recently, Zodiac.