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The Filming
Also pushing the envelope was costume designer Mary Zophres who, with Stone's encouragement, guided the AFFA players' uniforms into the next century.

"One of my ideas for the future of football was to have some teams wear their pants all the way down to the ankle rather than to the knee," she notes. "I also wanted to do away with some of the color schemes that are used in the NFL. For example, the Dallas Knights wear a gold that is nothing like golds utilized in existing uniforms."

Zophres, of course, also had to create a huge number of civilian clothes for cast members. "For Al Pacino's Tony D'Amato, I wanted to refer back to Vince Lombardi and some of the coaches of the past," she comments. "In doing research, I discovered that a lot of coaches wear team apparel, usually a polo shirt and a pair of pleated trousers, which are often supplied for free by sponsors. I wanted audiences to know that Tony D'Amato is not somebody who would take the money. He wears his own suit in a style that hearkens back to the 1960s. Tony wears a suit to every game, which is like a ritual for him."

For Cameron Diaz, Zophres altered the warm colors in which she clad her in "There's Something About Mary" to suit the character of Christina Pagniacci. "We decided to keep Cameron in grays, navies, a somewhat icier palate. It gives her the presence of a woman living and working in a man's world, and is Christina's way of making herself be taken seriously."

Zophres had a field day designing some of the team members' street clothes. "Jamie Foxx's Willie has to have sex appeal. He starts out not spending a lot of money on his clothes, but as he becomes more successful in the course of the film, he begins to add more expensive clothes and accessories, until he almost becomes somebody you don't really like anymore."

"And it seemed to me," concludes Zophres, "that LL Cool J's Julian Washington should be the most outrageous of all. Our theory is that Julian comes from no money, and in his mind clothes means wealth, even though to most people it's quite outlandish."
The overall look of the film was not only determined by sets and costumes, but ultimately by Stone and his director of photography, Salvatore Totino, who faced a huge task as a first-time feature cinematographer. Stone is noted as one of the film's visual innovators, and any cameraman working with him is automatically charged with keeping pace with the director's vision— and more than that, bringing something personal to the table.

"Sal's reel came to me among some 30 others that I saw, and I liked and trusted his work very much," says Stone. "Then I met Sal and liked his personality. He's quiet and confident, and has the ability to think and act independently. His work has a warm, classical Italian feeling to it, which I thought appropriate for the Miami locations."

Stone and Totino sought to imbue each of the five games with a different nuance and look, from the warmth of the Miami light for the Sharks' home games, to the harsher glare of the California game with the Crusaders, and the painful night game played by the Sharks against the New York Emperors in a driving rainstorm; ending in the "twilight zone" theatrical light of the Dallas Coliseum.

For the final face off between the Sharks and the Texas Knights, Totino and rigging grip Scott Howells hung two huge lighting grids, 120 feet by 100 feet, with 100 lights in each grid, over the field, which allowed for a controlled, slightly futuristic feeling to the proceedings. The equipment called into action to bring the audience directly into the on-field action included remote-controlled cranes, as well as Steadicam operator James Muro's specially developed lightweight camera,


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