Preservation Production Notes

Like the Hollywood nerd that I am, and the classic movie watcher my mother trained me to be, I recently re-watched 1962’s To Kill A Mockingbird, and for the first time read some of the production notes. Lo and behold, it was there I found a preservation story! Unable to take crews into the deep South to film, director Robert Mulligan and producer Alan Pakula decided to create the town of Maycomb (based on Monroeville, Alabama) in Hollywood. With over 30 buildings the set was massive and expensive. But it could have been even pricier. Art directors Alexander Golitzen and Henry Bumstead saved at least $100,000 by purchasing a dozen clapboard houses, which were set to be demolished to make way for a new Los Angeles Freeway. Golitzen said that to move and slightly remodel the homes was much cheaper than building from the ground up. He sure knew what he was talking about! The film also just happened to win an Oscar for Best Art Direction-Set Decoration. Coincidence? I think not…

Kate Scott
The original post can be read here.
Kate is working to survey historic properties in Indiana and serves as our stalwart Communications Committee Chair. She works on advocacy and non-profit preservation projects whenever possible and moonlight as an architectural photographer.

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