THE BOURNE IDENTITY
About The Production (Continued)
important visual element of The Bourne Identity fell to French costume
designer Pierre-Yves Gayraud. Rather than dip into his mastery of haute
couture - so elegantly displayed in Indochine and East-West -
the designer made much grittier choices in dressing Matt Damon and Franka
"We decided early
on to keep a very simple look for Matt as Jason Bourne," said Gayraud.
"The character begins with clothing borrowed from the fishermen who save
him - very old, very dirty, a torn sweater, a filthy parka. He later begins to
establish his personality, but his clothes must never draw attention. He wears
practical clothes, the kind you might buy in a military clothing store -
T-shirts, jeans, boots. Later, as he needs to gain respectability to gain entry
to offices and decent hotels, he wears a simple long black winter coat.
"As Marie, Franka
has two looks in the movie," Gayraud continued. "The first is her
gypsy/artist look, which is very cool. Our key hair stylist, Kay Georgiou,
created multi-colored hair for Franka, very post-punk and on her, extremely
attractive. This contrasts with a more conservative look that she affects later.
We fabricated every single
piece of wardrobe for Franka nothing was store-bought."
Nykwana Wombosi's (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje) uniform and civilian dress after
Zaire's ex-dictator Mobutu Sese Seko and Uganda's di Amin Dada. The
character's numerous wives are dressed in a startlingly beautiful array of
African and western designs.
The Czech Republic's
capital of Prague, which has played virtually every city in Europe recently,
primarily doubled as Zurich, Switzerland for The Bourne Identity.
"Unless you view
Zurich from far back, in which you see its relationship to the lake, it's not
a highly visual city," Crowley observed of the city the production scouted
before settling on film-friendly Prague. "We knew that we could select
locations in Prague that would be even more dramatic than what we could find in
"I expected Zurich
to be big and imposing because of the presence of all those banks," added
production designer Weil, "but it's a lot more provincial - neat, clean
and sweet, sort of a cross between Strasbourg and Berlin."
However, what Weil and
his production team created in Prague, assisted by special effects supervisor
Philippe Hubin and visual effects supervisor Peter Donen, exceeded neat, clean
and sweet. Large swaths of downtown Prague were expropriated by the filmmakers
and redressed as Zurich, with tons of faux snow both on the ground
and floating to earth, often abetting the real snow in wintry, sub-freezing
Prague. Joined by a contingent of highly skilled and experienced Czech film
personnel, The Bourne Identity took full advantage of what the city had
A defunct branch of the
HypoBank - on its way to being completely refurbished as a luxury hotel - was
cannily converted by Weil, supervising art director Bettina von den Steinen and
set decorator Alexandrine Mauvezin into the United States Consulate in Zurich,
one of the most important backdrops in the story. It's here that Bourne, under
suspicion by Swiss police, tangles with Marines and other security personnel and
suddenly connects with Marie. Three stories of the Consulate were created
within, including the huge Visa Room and office space above.
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