Los Angeles Times



Production design by Dylan Cole (“Tron: Legacy”) and Ben Procter (“Ender’s Game”)


Time frame:

Hero home: Metkayina Reef Village

To demonstrat­e how the Na’vi race integrates with the environmen­t, filmmakers suspended the village from the roots of monumental mangrove-like trees. Designer Cole says, “We explored a mix of tensile membrane architectu­re for their communal spaces, walkways and tarps. For their homes, we used woven wasp nest-like structures. Weta Workshop constructe­d a 14-foot-tall version of the Sully home from bent cane, woven flax and other natural materials. This was 3-D scanned and photograph­ed by Weta Digital so all that reality could be used in their final VFX shots.”

Inspiratio­n: Polynesia, Malaysia, Indonesia among others.

Workplace: Bridgehead

Reminiscen­t of a frontier boom town, the human-built industrial port refines fossil fuels at a relentless pace. “Jim [Cameron] wanted it to feel like ants, toiling and building,” designer Procter says.

Inspiratio­n: Spacecraft, mega cranes, work ships, oil rigs and refineries served as contempora­ry reference points. “This engineered world of design is based on function rather than style and therefore evolves slowly,” Procter notes. “Rather than explicitly aiming for futurism, I guess you could say we looked for tomorrow in the periphery of today.”

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