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Interviews > Richard Hescox
(Pre-Production Artist: Escape From New York)
How did you end up
being an artist and a poster artist?
I always drew
and loved doing art. I went to a good art college and graduated with
honors. Being in Hollywood, film work was all around so I just fell into it. I
did poster art for E.T., The Dark Crystal, Swamp Thing and
lots of other projects.
you get the assignment to do early promotional art for Escape From New York?
I was doing film advertising illustrations at the time and I would send my
portfolio to all the ad agencies in town (Los Angeles/Hollywood). On occasion I
would get a call to come in for an assignment. I was called to a company I
hadn't worked for before. Don't remember their name now. They roughly explained
the film to me. General story line was about all. They had a vague idea of the
image they wanted: Snake squatting in front of a ruined but recognizable NY
skyline with a suggestion of prison walls. It was pre-production so there
weren't any photos of the actors or sets to work from. They mentioned the eye
patch and snake tattoo. And they asked for a semi-futuristic big gun in his
How much creative input did you have on the art and how
was it conceived? Also, did you know that your art was the inspiration behind
the promotional pre-production photos of Kurt Russell as a long haired Plissken
where his futuristic weapon was removed and a leather shirt was added?
I had full freedom to design the scene and the weapon and costume for the
painting. The hair was just what my model had since they did not tell me any
different. In terms of development it was just hear the details they gave me in
one meeting, do the painting, turn it in and get paid. I have a vague memory
that the art was initially done for an ad in Variety magazine to generate
interest in the project before it got going. Maybe not even cast yet. All the
other uses for the art were a surprise to me!
Was this the only piece you did for the movie or did you
have other drawings or ideas?
This was the only piece done.
did it take to make and what reactions did you get from it?
than a week. Hollywood always seemed to have short deadlines. Don't remember any
specific reaction to it but they accepted it, paid me and used it, so they must
have liked it?
any other anecdotes you'd like to share with us about the art?
brother-in-law posed for the figure in my backyard. Changed the face from his
you think of the movie
I never saw it.
What are you currently doing and what do you enjoy
doing in your spare time?
Now I mostly
paint personal paintings in the Fantasy art genre and sell them to collectors. I
was in Computer game design for many years, but now paint as I like without art
Thank you for your time,
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