Space used to be depicted in movies as gleaming and futuristic, but in Alfonso Cuarón’s story of lone survival it is filled with flying junk and a disintegrating International Space Station.
Gravity is Alfonso Cuarón’s story of lone survival (by Ryan Stone/Sandra Bullock) amidst disintegrating technology in space.
Where space used to be depicted in movies as gleaming and futuristic, now it is filled with space junk and a disintegrating International Space Station.
For Andy Nicholson, production designer (below left), creating the sets for this film involved the same level of intense, detailed research and photorealistic recreation as he would apply to creating the backdrop for a “period piece.”
Nicholson tells DnA about delving into a huge on line archive of images of past space flights, and finding not only fascinating facts about spacecraft – like the usefulness of Velcro – but also just how brilliantly engineers over the past 50 years have designed every aspect of a spacecraft, adding up to purely functional “non-design design” that is also alarmingly “fragile” when faced with onslaught.
Andy Nicholson is nominated for an Oscar for Best Production Design, along with Rosie Goodwin and Joanne Woollard for set decoration. Once he and his team created the set, they were recreated in CGI by the UK company Framestore.