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FLAGS OF OUR FATHERS

About The Production
As always, Clint Eastwood has assembled a unit of dedicated professionals to bring his vision to the screen. Heading up this team as Eastwood's collaborator is producer Robert Lorenz, who has overseen all aspects of development, production, post-production, marketing, and distribution for Eastwood's five most recent films. In this complex production, Eastwood relied closely on casting director Phyllis Huffman, who passed away after a bout with cancer while the film was in post-production. "Phyllis was Clint's close confidante,” says Lorenz. "With well over one hundred speaking roles in ‘Flags of Our Fathers,' she had her work cut out for her; she auditioned literally hundreds of actors in New York and Los Angeles and everywhere in between.”

During the production of the film, Eastwood relied on a team that has come to know well how the director operates. Michael Owens, who first worked with Eastwood on "Space Cowboys,” took on a central role during the production as visual effects supervisor and second unit director. Also serving on Eastwood's production team were director of photography Tom Stern (5 films with Eastwood as DP, many more with him as chief lighting technician), costume designer Deborah Hopper (5 films with Eastwood as costume designer, 9 more Eastwood films in other roles), editor Joel Cox (20 films with Eastwood), and the late production designer Henry Bumstead (11 films with Eastwood). As a testament not only to their close working relationship but their friendship as well, Eastwood has dedicated the film to the memory of Huffman and Bumstead, as well as to the memory of Iwo Jima photographer Joe Rosenthal.

Before his death at the age of 93, Bumstead said, "I still think it's fun to sit down with a blank piece of paper, design a set, and see it built. That's been my whole life; I get a lot of enjoyment from it.”

The winner of two Oscars® and a nominee for two more, Bumstead's collaboration with Eastwood began on "Joe Kidd,” in which Eastwood starred, and "High Plains Drifter,” Eastwood's second film as a director. Though Eastwood wanted Bumstead "to go steady with him” (in Bumstead's words) at that point, Bumstead could not pass up the opportunity to work with such directors as Alfred Hitchcock, Billy Wilder, Martin Scorsese, and George Roy Hill (for whom Bumstead won the Academy Award® for his work on "The Sting”). It would not be until "Unforgiven” that Bumstead and Eastwood would reunite. "I can't say enough about Clint,” he said. "Just the way he puts his camera on the sets shows we work together well: I know the way he likes to direct, how he likes to place the camera; I design the sets for that action, and he puts the camera in that spot. I think he's the best director in the United States.” Before passing on, Bumstead completed his work designing the sets for "Letters from Iwo Jima,” Eastwood's companion film to "Flags of Our Fathers.”

Tom Stern served Clint Eastwood as chief lighting technician for more than 20 years – since 1982's "Honkytonk Man” – before becoming his cinematographer in 2002. Their long history together serves him well. "I like to call Clint the most articulate non-verbal person I've ever met. I can read him pretty well. I'll start by showing him an image or a book with pictures I've selected, and we'll talk about those. To a large extent, Clint leaves things malleable until the last possible moment. He encourages everyone to be flexible and spontaneous.”

Stern says that despite Eastwood's reputation for making films with so few takes that they consistently wrap early, he never feels pressured. "In 25 years, I've never felt rushed,” he says. "We go very, very fast, and we shoot these films in record time, but during the day-to-day, things are very calm and quiet.” With this film, Stern notes, the human, emotional connection to the story is the most important element. "It's a grand canvas, but it's a very p

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