2016 Oscars Challenge: [24] “The Martian” – Best Production Design

THE MARTIAN
Arthur Max (Production Design); Celia Bobak (Set Decoration)


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Bringing to life the world of NASA in the not-too-distant future doesn’t seem like the greatest stretch of the imagination. Production Designer Arthur Max describes getting sketches and details about the true-to-life probes that were created in the film. Max also discusses creating the life-sized exterior of the HAB, which is the place character Mark Watney resides most of the film. Most memorable design moments from the film include the potato farm that Watney produces during his stint on the planet, with the plants sticking out of the dirt that Watney cultivates. Spaceship halls, rovers, and artificial habitats are just the surface of what is created in “The Martian.” And as impressive as some of these elements are, there really isn’t anything that hasn’t been done before.

What’s its competition? With sheer volume on its side, “Mad Max: Fury Road” likely has the edge on “The Martian,” which plays it safe when it comes to Production Design simply due to the source material, which didn’t call for anything extravagant. Matching the designs of the real-to-life probes and the elements of NASA are pivotal to telling the appropriate story, but when it comes to comparing films, apples to apples, “The Martian” is simply lacking. Not to mention, “Mad Max: Fury Road” and “The Revenant” have much more support in terms of the voting body, meaning more eyes are on those films rather than “The Martian.”

Previous nominations? This is the third Academy Award nomination for Arthur Max. He was previously nominated for:

  • AMERICAN GANGSTER (2007)
    Nominee, Art Direction
  • GLADIATOR (2000)
    Nominee, Art Direction

This is the second Academy Award nomination for Celia Bobak. She was previously nominated for:

  • THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA (2004)
    Nominee, Art Direction

bridgeofspies-productiondesign danishgirl-productiondesign madmaxfuryroad-productiondesign revenant-productiondesign


// Produced by Simon Kinberg, Ridley Scott, Aditya Sood, Michael Schaefer, and Mark Huffam // Directed by Ridley Scott //
// Dated Viewed: Wednesday, February 3rd, 2016 // BLU-RAY //  18 films – 26 days //

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