To me, the physical set in a movie is like an entire character in itself. Through color and lighting, directors have the opportunity to further develop plot lines, characters, or back-stories, without saying a word.
Take, for instance, "Down with Love", that silly movie with Renee Zellweger and Ewen McGregor. There's a clearly stylized look and feel to the sets, a deliberately fake visual reality.
We all felt, especially the Director and the Production Designer, that our color choices needed to be deliberate and bold. Each of our main characters existed in a specifically colored world. Barbara, Renee’s character, for instance, was always surrounded by lots of virginal white. This was accented by exuberant sherbet colors. Luckily our Director of Photography, Jeff Cronenweth, wasn’t afraid of all that white. Catch, the Ewen McGregor character, lived in a shifty bachelor’s world. His was a world of shadow and dark saturated color.
Are there any movies you've seen that would be fun to analyze, color-wise?
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Photographs copyright Twentieth Century Fox and Regency Enterprises.