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Filmmaking school's common question:Review on Production Designs of Wes Anderson’s Film

If you wanna be a filmmaker, let's know about the production Design of Wes Anderson's film.

Note: This review on Production design is based on 3 films of Wes Anderson which are:

  1. The Grand Budapest Hotel

  2. The Darjeeling Limited

  3. The Royal Tenenbaums

So if I am talking about Wes Anderson’s film and their production design then I should say one word for him is “auteur” even I cannot pronounce properly, if search this word in Wikipedia get proper definition “an auteur, I’ll let you know more about Auteurs in my next blog. The term is commonly referenced to filmmakers or directors with a recognisable style or thematic preoccupation.”

In 9 films of Wes Anderson he has worked with 4 different production designers, but in every film there is something which is called a director's vision or we can say that a director’s production design makes sense. In every film of him has a distinct style while watching them we can easily recognise ‘oh it is Wes Anderson’ even in the end when we would have not seen the credits, even though production designers are different but his vision on production design and overall filming style is the same.

Few bullet points on Production Design of his films:

  1. Symmetrical Framing:

Symmetrical framing in The Darjeeling Limited

It is not only about the camera setting in frames it is also about the vision of the director in production design as we can see in this pic there are equal number of deities and all characters have taken symmetrical space in frame, pillars are equally divided.

Painting Mona Lisa by Italian Renaissance artist Leonardo da Vinci is the most appreciated pic of the world, reason is symmetry.

Symmetry in The Royal Teananbaums

2. Material Synecdoche:

Material Synecdoche in The Darjeeling Limited

Material synecdoche is something which is very symbolic and metaphorical use of objects. It is like figure of speech in which a part is made to represent the whole or vice versa, basically these objects help the audience to know more about the character’s characteristics.

3. Distinct Chromatic Language and Props:

Chromatic language of narration in The Grand Budapest

The world of Wes Anderson films is full of colours, the story narration has language more than dialogues and voice over and is the chromatic language of scene. Wes Anderson films’ colour selection can be seen in costume, makeup, set design, lighting and location in one word a proper production design.

4. Detailed Oriented Character:

Characters of Wes Anderson’s film are very much well described and well established few of them in every movies has a special tendency of going to do their things as character with more detailing. This detail oriented approach can also be seen in the production design related to these characters accordingly.

The Grand Budapest Hotel: Bakery Scene

5.Production within Production:

Every time something happens as an event or situation there should be a new production design required within the existing production itself.

Few examples with the pics are as below:

The Grand Budapest Hotel The Darjeeling limited Funeral Scene

Confession scene in church

Some bullet points which are not the part of production design but very in every Wes Anderson’s Film:

  1. Slow motion emotional ending.

  2. Use of Voice Overs

  3. Use of 70’s songs

  4. Define personalities and their conflict.

  5. Family is the source of conflict and source of resolution

  6. Escapism and Hipsterness.

  7. World is full of peculiarities but the actors are dead serious.

  8. Death of someone is an event whether it is of villager boy, pets or customer.

  9. Abrupt reaction.

  10. Chapter like structure.

  11. Co-writers are also actors and producers in the film.

  12. Repetitive casting of same actors.

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