Unless you’re somehow related to someone involved in the making of the motion picture, chances are you don’t stick around your local multiplex to watch all of the end credits roll (especially if there are rats running around). However, sometimes after we have just taken in a really great film, we feel compelled to scan the closing credits for interesting bits of ephemera. Like the time we saw Danny McBride’s name in the closing credits of Underworld: Evolution (sadly, it didn’t turn out to be the Danny McBride of Foot Fist Way fame). Or the time we saw David Fincher’s name listed in the “Special Thanks To” section of Wall-E! Regarding the latter, during a recent Art of Producing panel he hosted, Patrick Goldstein of the Los Angeles Times got to the bottom of how the smack-happy Fincher got involved in the process of making Wall-E.
But as [“Wall-E” producer Jim] Morris explained Saturday, [“Milk” cinematographer Harris] Savides has another huge fan – “Wall-E” director Andrew Stanton, who was so obsessed with the look of another Van Sant film that Savides had shot that he insisted on tracking down Savides to hear how he did it, knowing that he wanted to reflect some of that visual style in “Wall-E.” At the time, Savides was shooting “Zodiac” for David Fincher, who had been an assistant matte cameraman for ILM back in the 1980s, where he’d first met Morris. So Morris and Stanton trooped down to the “Zodiac” set, where they got an earful of advice from Savides and Fincher as well.*
Knowing what we know of Fincher’s penchant for perfectionism, we think that “earful” is probably the most appropriate term that Goldstein could’ve used to describe the proceedings. But we’d still like to know what film of Van Sant’s that Savides lensed impressed Stanton so much that he made a special sojourn to the set of Zodiac. Based on the fact that Wall-E never told Eve to “punch the keys,” we’re guessing it wasn’t Finding Forrester.
*We apologize for the excessive amount of pronouns in that blockquote.
Producers on the secret art of producing [Big Picture/LAT]