Saturday, March 6, 2010

"Fixing the Red Carpet . . . "

Emily Blunt in The Young Victoria

Greetings all,

With the Oscars coming up this weekend, I (like I'm sure a great many of you) have had movie making on my mind over the last few days. So before we start hyper-analyzing everyone's gowns and hairstyles - or how wonderful (and frankly, possibly dreadful) the evening's presentation is going to be . . . I'm taking a few moments to share some favourite moments from my last year at the movies.

Swoon. Rupert Friend's entrance in The Young Victoria (as the soon to be Prince Albert) was romantically breathtaking. Blenheim Palace was used as the stand-in for Buckingham Palace. The film makers used over a dozen residences across England - including Wilton House, Ham House, Ditchly Park, and Lancaster House.

I openly admit that I went to see this film about six (maybe even seven) times. I had promised numerous people that I would see it with them - and thus began a two week period when I saw it almost every other day with a wide collection of friends. Which frankly, was perfectly fine by me. Besides its beautiful sets, and beautiful crafted story - it had an amazing music score (sadly not nominated) with several period works of music skillfully woven into its design.
I guess I'll also admit while I'm at it, that Handel's "Zadok the Priest" is a serious favourite of mine - and the fact that it's used in the score (at about 2 1/2 minutes into the film) moved me to tears each and every time.

The Queen's Buckingham Palace bedroom - filmed at Ditchly Park in Oxfordshire.
Let's all just take a few moment - and look past the luminous Emily Blunt and the handsome Rupert Friend - to admire the handpainted wall covering. Yum . . . .

Julianne Moore Dressing Room. A Single Man

A Single Man. Damn. Double Damn. The simple fact the these sets weren't nominated for an Oscar in Art Direction borders on criminal. Julianne Moore's decadent dressing room (simply awash with colour - and those fantastical Hollywood Regency lamps) was simply marvelous. That lush pale pink carpet. The coral ikat drapes. The decadent flokati upholstered vanity chair.

In contrast, the stark simple lines of George's bedroom. Her bedroom absolutely flooded with colour and passion. His room completely devoid of both - simply utilitarian. It's a clear statement - and so easily expresses the inner lives of each characters.

And maybe the lives of our design clients as well.
"Interior design" - it's just set design that people get to live in every day.


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