Larry Fong is no stranger to movies adapted from comics. Before landing the gig of cinematographer on Watchmen, he held the same post on 300, working alongside his old film school pal Zack Snyder. Fong talked about his long time relationship with the director in a recent interview with Italian web site Comicus.it.
As a result of our friendship and history, we're pretty good at understanding each other. The best skill a cinematographer can have is to be able to read the mind of his director. When he's one of your best friends, its much easier!
Fong went on to discuss the scope of film, describing it as “incredible” — with sets that were bigger than any he had ever worked with before. He gave high praise to Watchmen set designer Alex McDowell who Fong said, “took things so far beyond what I could have imagined that the mind reels.”
He also explained that during the making of Watchmen the “graphic novel was definitely the ‘bible’ of the show” and that when comic co-creator Dave Gibbons visited the set he “seemed to be quite ecstatic” as far as Fong could tell.
He even backed up his friend Zack Snyder, explaining that the director is more than qualified to bring the comic to the big screen than some of the more critical fans may think.
Firstly, Zack is more of a fan than any of the critics will ever know. He didn't just jump on the bandwagon when Hollywood decided to travel down that road. He grew up on comics and graphic novels. From the day I met him he was always talking about, and even drawing, comics and characters that I never heard of. He was the first one to make me aware of Frank Miller. Everyone involved with 'Watchmen' already had, or soon gained, great respect for the material and took it very seriously...and yes, we were very aware of the fans and felt a responsibility to them as well...being fans ourselves.
When asked if the movie adaptation would bear any resemblance to its comic counterpart, Fong said that even though many frames of Snyder’s storyboards matched panels from the story, “photographically, it was more important for me to capture the spirit of Watchmen. That’s more of an intuitive process.”
He also revealed that a “few scenes that pay homage to other films,” although he did not say which ones. I don't think I’m going out on a limb in guessing that Taxi Driver is at least one of those classics that gets a nod.
4.27.08 Source: Comicus.it
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