Create a warm and comfortable sci-fi future for After Yang

after that It’s probably the most relaxing sci-fi movie this year. Directed by Kogonada, the film is set at some point in the unspecified future after an unspecified disaster and follows a young family struggling through the loss of a robot (the titular Yang, played by Justin H.), a caregiver and brother to an adoptive daughter.

The movie touches on all kinds of topics, from interracial adoption to what it means to be human, but much of the world-building comes from the world. Few specific details are given about the time or place in which the film is set or the events leading up to the almost post-apocalyptic world in which the characters live. This means that the visual design has done a lot of the heavy work in terms of storytelling.

According to production designer Alexandra Schaller, one of the goals was to create a science fiction vision that was a far cry from the typical grim and gray view of a post-apocalyptic world. “We don’t want a future that looks weird,” she says. the edge. “We want a future that feels warm and comfortable, a future that is functional and that we can really see for ourselves.”

Schaller says she was initially drawn to the project when, after reading the script, she found herself able to envision the world it would create after that in a. Then this decision was reinforced after I met with the director. “Kogonada is a real beauty and takes a great interest in design and storytelling that takes place in space,” Schaller explains. “I actually came to the project really early. I went through a long pre-production period where I could really take the time to think about the movie and talk about it with it and design it. I did a lot of conceptual work before we did the official set up. So I would say a lot of the movie It looks just as I imagined it because I’ve had a lot of time to think about it.”

And this vision is very different from most science fiction stories. Schaller, who has a background in immersive theatre, says she has avoided watching future films so as not to be affected. after thatOur world is full of plant life, and homes have an almost wild atmosphere, full of muted lights and natural materials. Even the way people dress looks comfortable. It’s a stark difference from the harsh and sterile view of the future found in much of science fiction.

“We wanted to feel that part of the storytelling, rather than stating it quite clearly.”

But it’s also more than a purely aesthetic choice. “I would describe it as solidly futuristic,” Schaller says. “It was really important to Kogonada that the background feel as if it’s post-apocalyptic. Humanity has rebuilt itself after a catastrophe, so it’s a very green world. It was also really important to him that the film feel boundless and universal.”

This presents itself in many different ways throughout the movie. The self-driving car the Fleming family is in, for example, is overgrown with plants as it serves as a fuel source, while their house is dominated by a huge tree in the yard. The tea shop run by Colin Farrell’s character has bare stone walls, as if hewn from a mountain, and in one scene, you can see huge vertical farms in the background. Few details of the world are spelled out; Instead, they are things viewers should infer while watching.

The point is that we live in a post-apocalyptic period. Humanity has had to undergo some kind of big change, and they’re realizing that we need to live with nature, not against it,” Schaller says. There’s a symbiosis between humans and nature. Everything is designed to work with nature.” “We wanted to feel that part of the storytelling, rather than stating it quite clearly,” she adds.

The same goes for the website. There are some hints after that It’s set in the United States, but it’s also a movie about a couple, played by Irish and English actors (Pharrell and Judy Turner-Smith) who adopt a Chinese daughter (Malia Emma Thandrawydjaja) in the aftermath of some kind of disaster. It is a world that Schaller describes as “cosmopolitan”, and this is shown through a mixture of cultural aesthetics but also in smaller details, such as a milk carton containing information written in multiple languages. “It’s not really a world without a place, but a world without borders that maybe is freer and more accepting or more comfortable with itself,” she explains.

(Among the many creatives who worked on the film were concept artist Oliver Zeller, who helped design the vehicle, and Matthew Vidalis, who, among other things, created all of the signature packaging.)

All of these details help create a particularly rich backdrop for a story at its heart about a family struggling through change. And they are especially important in a movie like after that, full of long-winded slow motion shots that really let you immerse yourself in the details, making it easy for you to pick out the little things you might otherwise have missed. “Kogunada, as a director, is very aware of the space and the quiet storytelling that happens between the lines,” says Schaller. “It’s a small detail that doesn’t matter if you’re not really looking. But for Kogunada, it really mattered.”

contrast between after that And other visions of a post-apocalyptic future can be seen in another project Schaller worked on, last year’s TV adaptation of Y: The last man, which had a more typical, gloomy look, as expressed through its world design. Schaller sensed this difference acutely. As part of its research process, it uses Pinterest to create mood boards filled with images of whatever it is you’re working on. “I remember finishing after that And I think, “My Pinterest is so beautiful,” she says. Then I started searching Y: The last man It was like “bye”.

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