Art Directors Guild Awards Honor ‘Anna Karenina,’ ‘Life of Pi,’ ‘Skyfall,’ Snub ‘Lincoln’ and ‘Argo’

Art Directors Guild Awards Honor 'Anna Karenina,' 'Life of Pi,' 'Skyfall,' Snub 'Lincoln' and 'Argo'

The 17th annual Art Directors Guild Awards, presented at a lively if long ceremony at the Beverly Hilton, honored “Anna Karenina,” “Life of Pi” and “Skyfall” in the period, fantasy and contemporary feature film categories, respectively. (Full list of nominations here.)

Returning host Paula Poundstone found a joke for the night and stuck with it: Art directors wear unusual eye-glasses. “Apparently you can’t do this without an elaborate frame,” she quipped. She was also struck by the appropriately well-designed look of the Beverly Hilton’s ballroom, which boasted fringe hanging from the ceiling and a special side-stage for the live band. “The person who designed this room tonight will be up for next year’s ADG awards.”

Awarded in the half-hour TV series category was HBO’s “Girls.” Production designer Judy Becker said that when working on the show she was inspired by her own life in New York when she was a twentysomething, and said of creator Lena Dunham, “She’s the best.”

“Star Trek” and “Reading Rainbow” alum LeVar Burton awarded TV movie or mini-series to “American Horror Story: Asylum,” while John C. McGinley of “Scrubs” handed the hour-long TV series award to “Game of Thrones.”

The award for a period feature film beat out both “Lincoln” and “Argo”: “Anna Karenina.” Production designer Sarah Greenwood thanked director Joe Wright for letting her be part of his “mad visions,” and admitted that “to be here in such illustrious company is quite daunting.”

Fantasy feature film went to “Life of Pi.” Production designer David Gropman brought his entire team on stage with him, and bowed to them before saying that “no designer works by himself.” He thanked director Ang Lee, who he called “the master of our ship.”

Gorgeous Jane Seymour was on hand to present the award for contemporary feature film. The former Bond girl’s presence proved appropriate, as “Skyfall” won in the category.

Earlier in the evening, Seymour presented the pre-announced Cinematic Imagery Award to Bond production designers Sir Ken Adam, Allen Cameron, Peter Lamont and Dennis Gassner. Lamont and Gassner were in attendance to accept the honor. Lamont has worked in some capacity — starting as uncredited draftsman and working up to production designer — on 18 Bond films. After “Casino Royale,” he passed the baton to Gassner, quipping, “What can I say? Quantum, Skyfall, money.” Gassner in turn said that his work on the last two 007 installments has been “the greatest privilege of my life.”

Not in attendance was Lifetime Achievement honoree Herman Zimmerman, who designed “Star Trek: Next Generation,” as well as six films in the Trek franchise. His video tribute was moving; Zimmerman said onscreen that he “never felt like [being a production designer] was a job. A lot of hours, but it was just too much fun.”

Complete list of winners:

17th Annual Excellence in Production Design Awards

Contemporary Film

SKYFALL

Production Designer: Dennis Gassner

Fantasy Film

LIFE OF PI

Production Designer: David Gropman

Period Film

ANNA KARENINA

Production Designer: Sarah Greenwood

When Greenwood exits, Poundstone notes, “I’m seeing a lot of British people up here… why is that?”

Commercials and Music Videos

XBOX

Episode: “Halo 4 Commissioning”; Production Designer: Christopher Glass

One-Hour Single Camera Television Series

GAME OF THRONES

Episode: “The Ghost Of Harrenhal”; Production Designer: Gemma Jackson

Lifetime Achievement Award

HERMAN ZIMMERMAN

Television Movie or Miniseries

AMERICAN HORROR STORY: ASYLUM


Episode: “I Am Anne Frank, Part 2″; Production Designer: Mark Worthington

Episode of a Half Hour Single-Camera Television Series

GIRLS

Episode: Pilot; Production Designer: Judy Becker

Awards, Music, or Game Shows

84th ANNUAL ACADEMY AWARDS

Production Designer: John Myhre

Episode of a Multi-Camera, Variety, or Unscripted Series

SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE


Episode: Mick Jagger, Host; Production Designer: Keith Raywood

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