PRODUCTION DESIGN PORN: Wes Anderson

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Wes Anderson is one of the most influential filmmakers of his generation. With storybook-like imagery, and highly stylized production design and cinematography he is the definition of an auteur and certainly one of my favourite filmmakers working today. His stories are as fun and interesting as his visual flair so it isn’t hard to see why he is nominated for an Academy Award this year alongside his Moonrise Kingdom co-writer, Roman Coppola for Best Original Screenplay.

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The Master: Below the Line Interview

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The Master- Paul Thomas Anderson

THE INTERVIEW

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Check out this below the line interview for Paul Thomas Anderson‘s The Master with Production Designers, Jack Fisk & David Crank; Costume Designer, Mark Bridges and Editor, Leslie Jones.

Source: The Hot Button DP30 Series

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HUMP DAY QUOTE DAY: Tim Burton & Horror

.Tim Burton, in the early 80's, spent a lot of time developing Trick or Treat, a still-unproduced film about a little boy who spends Halloween with monsters trying to look human for the holiday.

Tim Burton, in the early 80′s, spent a lot of time developing Trick or Treat, a still-unproduced film about a little boy who spends Halloween with monsters trying to look human for the holiday.

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“I never really got nightmares from movies. In fact, Continue reading

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My Life in the Art Department in Los Angeles

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As a new contributor to Art DepartMENTAL, I will be covering the Art department scene in Los Angeles in greater detail as the months go on. Rose and I thought it would be a good idea to start off with a little bit about myself and my work in the art department through a Q&A. So without further delay, Rose asked and I answered…

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An In-Depth Look at the Design of the ‘Prometheus’ Rovers

Prometheus Poster Art Courtesy of 20th Century Fox

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The production design for Prometheus surprised a lot of people when the first set stills leaked. Instead of the grungy, mechanical aesthetic of Alien, which it predates, Prometheus’ sets are clean, brightly lit, and very colourful. It’s texturing is much less heavy than Alien, and the reflective surfaces and bold, graphic palette seem a world away from the 1979 film’s muted golds, browns and creams. Ridley Scott’s influences for the look of Prometheus can be tracked back to the 1965 film Planet Of The Vampires - in fact the space suits for the Prometheus crew are taken almost verbatim from that film. Broadly speaking though, pulp sci-fi appears to be the major influence for the film’s look, mixing it’s tone and colour with updated version of the bulkheads and corridors of the original Nostromo setsPrometheus’ prop vehicles, the RT Rovers, continue this theme.

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HUMP DAY QUOTE DAY: Do the Best You Can

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Haskell Wexler- Cinematographer

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“If you can spend your time doing the best you can doing Continue reading

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Dante Ferretti’s Best Art Direction Oscar Speech

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Tom Hanks hands husband and wife team, Dante Ferretti and Francesca Lo Schiavo their Oscars for Best Art Direction.

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Dante Ferretti was the only winner to thank his crew, let alone any below-the-line crew. Films get made on the backs of their crew and I was so pleased to see that Dante respects his crew enough to thank them. It was lovely to see him win his 3rd Oscar for his staggering work on Hugowhich topped my list for best production design this past year. For once the Academy had it right.

For a list of all the nominees and winners of the 84th Academy Awards, click here.

Below is Dante Ferretti’s acceptance speech: Continue reading

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Art DepartMENTAL’s Top 10 Favourite Films of 2011


Art DepartMENTAL's 2011 Top 10 Favourite Films- Tree of Life

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If there is anything I love more than production design it is film in and of itself. I see roughly 250-300 films a year so while I definitely have a bit of catching up to do I did engulf quite a few films last year. However, I’m still kicking myself that I have yet to see A Separation which I’ve been told is phenomenal. Perhaps once I see it this list will change but as of right now, on Oscar Sunday, here are my Top 10 Favourites of 2011! Don’t judge. Oh, okay, you can judge.

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PRODUCTION DESIGN PORN: Art DepartMENTAL’s Top 10 Best Production Design of 2011

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Art DepartMENTAL'S 2011 Top 10 Best Production Design

After some long and hard deliberations I have pared down what are, in my opinion, the top 10 best production designed/art directed films of 2011. In the end, given the subjectivity of film in general,  all this means is these were my favourite designs. Going through the many films I had on my list I was awestruck at the diversity, styles and overall quality of so many of the films. 2011 was really a banner year for production design the way I see it. Last year, I found it easy to just do a top 5 but this year I found it impossible not to do a top 10 and I easily could have made it a top 20.

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What’s in a Meme?

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A meme is “an idea, behavior or style that spreads from person to person within a culture.” A meme acts as a unit for carrying cultural ideas, symbols or practices in this case being the “What People Think I Do” meme. I found it particularly interesting when I started seeing the art department taking part as I do believe people really don’t know what we do. Even major producers don’t know what we do. So I compiled 5 of the memes I felt most related to the art department below:

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