One of the most inventive things about Wes Anderson's movies are his use of miniatures. His worldbuilding is unlike any other, with live-action and animated sets that seamlessly blend together to make something extraordinary. His new movie, The French Dispatch, plays on those Anderson techniques to give us several unique stories that thrive with interstitials done in miniature. But how are these done, and who's making these small items used in these movies? 

Check out this video on the short model shop “making of” featuring the miniature work that Simon Weisse and his Berlin crew did for the film from piercefilm productions and let's talk after! 

Weisse and his crew did amazing work for this movie. Obviously, making a movie like this becomes sort of a family affair, with everyone bonding and banding together, but the level of the design of the miniatures makes these scenes stand out as impeccably art-directed.

The work and care that goes into making miniatures for this film is undeniable. But they needed ideas for how to make these things.

They looked at old French movies, went to flea markets, and even studied vintage lighting and furniture to get the appeal and showcase a forgotten style. 

Weisse and his team of craftspeople spent months building about 20 models for The French Dispatch, including the office sign, various cityscapes, and a large cargo plane that splits in half to reveal a cross-section of the passengers within. 

Weisse’s key to making things look real is that he always uses a camera to film his models as they’re built and refined to make sure their dimensions and perspectives come across to the viewer. That's a really smart way of analyzing them in real time, so they don't have to break and tweak them later. 

One of the major models Weisse’s studio created is a 30-foot-long streetscape that is the backdrop of some of the miniature and stop-motion action in the film. It has shacks, homes, and even an ancient movie theater in the space.

It took weeks to build, and then even longer to paint and perfect. But Its use in the movie is a long tracking shot that is transformative and so stylized you can't imagine how boring it would look in CGI. 

Are you a fan of these kinds of builds and miniatures? Let us know in the comments. 

Source: piercefilm productions