Back in November of 2007, Comic Related was introduced to an individual who works in the film industry. This individual, who called herself Cassandra Faust, was good enough to share an ongoing series of first hand reports direct from the set of the Watchmen film. She's continued sharing additional information even after the close of production. Ms. Faust worked as an extra during the filming and offers a great summary of what she witnessed. We're pleased to share her latest Watchmen report today and Ms. Faust has our sincere, continued and ongoing thanks...
WATCHMEN: Good Evening Jacobi
As we continue our tour of the WATCHMEN New York backlot, the time has come to look around the home of Edward Jacobi, aka Moloch. Anyone familiar with the graphic novel knows how important this set piece is to the plot of the novel. Not only does Rorschach visit Jacobi numerous times but the Comedian has his breakdown here prior to his being murdered and it's here where Walter Kovacs gets taken into custody. From a filming standpoint, this is also one of the few buildings on the backlot with a fully decorated interior. So join me now as we walk in Rorschach's footsteps.
In this first shot from the finished film we see Rorschach about to interrogate Jacobi. The next shot shows the doorway as it looks today.
If you take a close look at the first picture of the doorway, taken from one of the trailers, you'll notice that they have reversed the image. Check out the address numbers and you'll see what I mean. Still confused, well this next shot should clear things up.
This is how the address reads.
I couldn't resist picking up a little WATCHMEN souvenir for myself. While poking around inside, I came across the first number of this address and brought it home. Here's a quick shot of it.
Before we head inside, let's get a closer look at the outside of the facade. As with all of this incredible set, you'll notice that the details are stunning close up and this will make the buildings look utterly convincing in the finished film. From the finished shots I've seen already via trailers and TV ads, I find I have to remind myself that the New York shots were filmed here on this set.
Here's the view from the steps, looking to the right.
Looks real, doesn't it? Well, this next shot will reveal some Hollywood magic.
In the above picture you can see the snow and protective plastic flapping in the wind through the small barred window.
Now, before we head up the stairs and go inside, we would be remiss if we didn't take a look at a certain window all WATCHMEN fans know so well.
Or course, it may look more familiar to you all like this:
Let's head up those steps now.
The above shot is a close up of the railing on the right of the doorway as you go in.
And here are a couple of views from the left.
And I couldn't resist a peak over the railing.
This next shot shows the front door still bearing the marks of the police raid that brought down Rorschach.
And the back of the door.
This next shot is the view from the doorway.
Just imagine you have your back up against the door in the pictures above.
This reporter can attest to the construction skills of the set builders. More than a year of rain, snow, heat and cold and these stairs are as solid as ever. Watch your step though, the railing is missing. You'll see what happened to it later. Before we head up, here's a look at the floor tile in the next shot.
And the stairs themselves.
All right, let's head upstairs and see if Jacobi is at home.
In the shot above is the door at the top of the stairs.
The next shot is a close up.
Now we're at the top of the stairs.
Putting our back to this door reveals a hallway that ends at that certain window from
which Rorschach leaps for his last stand with the law.
Before we examine the window more closely, the hallway leading to it reveals some signs of Rorschach's struggle. Here are shots from the film. In them we see Rorschach on the run while the S.W.A.T team blast away at him, tearing up the tenement in the process.
See those bullet hits on the wall to the left. Here they are today.
Okay, we've reached the window. Let's take a closer look at this WATCHMEN centrepiece.
The above shot is the view from the window as it looks today. The next shot shows us how it looks in the finished film. You'll note in the next two images how the filmmaker's have used CGI to make the buildings across the street taller.
You'll notice in those above shots that's there's a lot of glass exploding outwards. Well, not all of it fell to the street below as it appears in this shot from the film.
Looking from left to right, we see some evidence of that fateful night in the story and an incredible night of filming for us extras!
And what tour of Jacobi's hovel would be complete without a view from this famous window of the set below for a Rorschach perspective. Here's the view looking to the right.
And here's the view looking to the left. That little bit of snow capped green wall at the bottom of the shot is where the Rumrunner sign was affixed. Note the Gunga Diner on the left as well.
The next series of shots are some of the set details one is unlikely to be able to spot in the finished film. First up are the spindles directly across from the window.
And some wall details.
Turning around with our backs to the window, we see the view in the picture below. If you look closely you'll see the purple window frame left behind (after the Rorschach stunt leap through the window was completed) leaning up against the door. Also, as the last official video journal revealed Rorschach sliding along the floor to torch members of the S.W.A.T team from the doorway on the right, one would think that doorway led somewhere. Well, it does. It leads to a twenty foot drop to the snow-covered ground below. The Rorschach slide was filmed on a sound stage.
And a close up of the pipe in the above shot.
Okay, Jacobi doesn't seem to be at home so it's time to head back
downstairs for a last look around before leaving this incredible set.
Now we've all seen what happens to the railing for this staircase.
But what happened to all those spindles?
Well, believe it or not, the film crew just left them in a heap on the floor. Take a look.
Now before we leave the building for good, I wanted to share some more of the set.
In this next shot we see the side of the staircase. This is directly across from the piles of spindles.
And the corridor leading off to the right of the above picture shows us our last little bit of set detail. As you can see, every inch of the set was carefully detailed and weathered. This little doorway was in complete darkness behind the staircase. Only the flash from my camera revealed the level of work that went into it.
For an added bonus, I thought we'd take a look outside at the wall where the Rumrunner sign was affixed, flashing rhythmically the night Rorschach fell.
I also thought you might want a look at the official design specs for the Rumrunner sign and the bar itself. The following images are comicrelated.com exclusives!
And here are the design specs for the iconic Rumrunner bar doors.
Some concept art.
And, finally, the designs of signage for the front of the bar.
This last design shows gives us some details about where the signs were to be placed.
Here is the Rumrunner bar as it appears today. The doors have been removed for obvious reasons.
So ends this last tour of the WATCHMEN set. The film is just days away and the excitement is mounting. I, for one, can't wait to see the film. The movie is going to be an instant classic, I have no doubt.
I'll leave you with this parting shot. This graffiti greets people as they walk onto to the set. In a few days, we'll be the ones "watching the WATCHMEN"! Yahoo! Look for me on the big screen!
Think our good friend Cassie is done?
This time she may be. Only time will tell.
Miss Cassie's previous amazing reports?
Check out the complete history of her updates!
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