Throughout the ’90s and into the early aughts I knew, liked and sat down a few times with Richard Sylbert, one of the finest production designers who ever lived. Thinking about Emma Watson ‘s haircut led me to clips of Rosemary ‘s Baby, and then a two-part piece (taken from the RB DVD) about its making, and five or six clips of Sylbert on it. And I was just taking a few moments to think about him. Here are links to part #1 and part #2.
Sylbert discusses this and that decision about Rosemary’s Baby — the New York locations, the writing of the script with Roman Polanski, his advising Polanski to use Charles Grodin to play Dr. Hill, and how this Paramount film, which came out in ’68, was the beginning of the ’70s, in a sense. Sylbert was a wise and perceptive and eloquent man — he knew everyone and everything about 20th Century filmmaking, and knew all the biggest people and their foibles and neuroses, and he always told the greatest tales, and with a great New York voice.