Joseph Nemec III

Production designer, Art director, Set designer
This production designer and art director has worked on everything from high-tech fantasy sets to the rural Wild West. A little boy from Little Rock, Nemec began his career as an architect in his native Arkansas. Moving ... Read more »
Born: 11/30/1947 in Little Rock, Arkansas, USA

Filmography

Art Department (36)

Oops, Ups & Downs: The Murder Mystery of Humpty Dumpty 2015 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

Riddick 2013 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

Safe 2012 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

Ironclad 2011 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

A Perfect Getaway 2009 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

Mirrors 2008 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

The Hills Have Eyes 2006 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

The Medallion 2003 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

The Little Vampire 2000 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

Mad Cows 1999 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

Speed 2: Cruise Control 1997 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

The Saint 1997 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

Twister 1996 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

Wild Bill 1995 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

The Getaway 1994 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

The Shadow 1994 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

Judgment Night 1993 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

Patriot Games 1992 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

Terminator 2: Judgment Day 1991 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

Another 48 Hours 1990 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

Easy Come, Easy Go 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)

Production Designer

In Vino Veritas 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)

Production Designer

Alien Nation 1988 (Movie)

Art Direction (Art Director)

Extreme Prejudice 1987 (Movie)

Art Direction (Art Director)

Fatal Beauty 1987 (Movie)

Art Direction (Art Director)

American Flyers 1985 (Movie)

Art Direction Assistant (Art Assistant)

The Color Purple 1985 (Movie)

Art Direction Assistant (Art Assistant)

The Goonies 1985 (Movie)

Art Direction Assistant (Art Assistant)

Best Defense 1984 (Movie)

(Set Designer)

Continental Divide 1981 (Movie)

(Set Designer)

Xanadu 1979 (Movie)

(Set Designer)

A Perfect Day (TV Show)

Production Designer

Fear (TV Show)

Production Designer

Spies (TV Show)

Production Designer

The Brooke Ellison Story (TV Show)

Production Designer

Things That Go Bump in the Night (TV Show)

Production Designer
Producer (1)

Oops, Ups & Downs: The Murder Mystery of Humpty Dumpty 2015 (Movie)

(Co-Executive Producer)
Actor (1)

The Abyss 1989 (Movie)

Crew Member (Actor)

Biography

This production designer and art director has worked on everything from high-tech fantasy sets to the rural Wild West. A little boy from Little Rock, Nemec began his career as an architect in his native Arkansas. Moving to L.A. in the late 1970s, he answered an ad for work at Universal Studios and was hired. Nemec began his career as a set decorator and designer on such films as the music fantasy "Xanadu" (1980), "Ghost Story" and "Continental Divide" (1981). Nemec's first assignment as a set designer was for the wild children's fantasy "The Goonies" (1985), produced by Steven Spielberg, followed by the nostalgic, all-American landscapes of "American Flyers" and Spielberg's "The Color Purple" (both 1985).

Nemec then advanced to art director on such films as the sci-fi thriller "Alien Nation" (1988) and James Cameron's "The Abyss" (1989). The latter film entailed a claustrophobic submarine set which added to the thrills. By this time, Nemec was also working in TV, designing sets for "Sins of the Past" and "A Streetcar Named Desire" (both ABC, 1984). As a production designer, he worked on the series "Spies" (CBS, 1987) and "Midnight Caller" (NBC, 1988-1991) and such TV-movies as "Easy Come, Easy Go" (ABC, 1989) and "Fear" (Showtime, 1990).

With the dawn of the 90s, Nemec became a production designer for the big screen, eventually gaining a reputation as one of the best and most highly-regarded in the business. He began with the high-budgeted but fairly uncomplicated comedy "Another 48 Hrs." (1990), then moved right into Cameron's futuristic sci-fi thriller "Terminator 2: Judgment Day" (1991). This was Nemec's make-or-break assignment, and he came through designing a bleak, eerie and foreboding look for the film, laying out his ideas by using miniatures and computer-generated printouts.

Nemec was production designer on the action thrillers "Patriot Games" (1992), directed by Philip Noyce, "Judgment Night" (1993) and the 1994 remake of "The Getaway" before getting his next big chance, with the comic book caper "The Shadow" (also 1994). The finished film did badly at the box office, but Nemec's overwhelmingly stylish and moody Art Deco sets wowed everyone. A change of pace was Walter Hill's Western "Wild Bill" (1995), with its stark, dusty and low-tech look. One of his biggest challenges was Jan De Bont's "Twister" (1996), which required Nemec to work with the special effects crew and recreate both charming Midwestern towns, and their tornado-torn counterparts (many of his sets were torn apart using specific tornado-damage information). He has continued to design stylish thrillers including Noyce's "The Saint" and De Bont's sequel "Speed 2: Cruise Control" (both 1997). For the latter, he not recreated the interior of a luxury liner, but also an entire Caribbean town.

He is the father of actor Corin 'Corky' Nemec.

Relationships

Corin Nemec Actor

Son
Born Nov. 5, 1971; mother, Janis Nemec

Corin Nemec

Son
born 1971

EDUCATION

University of Arkansas

Fayetteville , Arkansas

Milestones

1996

Worked on Jan De Bont's blockbuster "Twister"

1991

Hired by Cameron as production designer for "Terminator 2: Judgment Day"

1990

First credit as production designer, "Another 48 Hrs."

1989

Had bit role as crew member of James Cameron's "The Abyss"; also served as art director

1987

First credit as art director, "Extreme Prejudice"

1987

First series credit as production designer, "Spies" (CBS)

1986

First TV-movie credit as art director, "Blind Justice" (CBS)

1985

First credit as assistant art director, "The Goonies", produced by Steven Spielberg; also served same function on Spielberg's "The Color Purple"

1983

First TV-movie credit as set decorator, "V" (NBC)

1980

First feature credit as set designer, "Xanadu"

Worked as an architect in Arkansas

Raised in Arkansas

Moved to L.A. in late 1970s; eventually hired to work as set designer at Universal

Bonus Trivia

.

"Every set he's done is magnificent. . .He's as good as you are going to get." --"Shadow" producer Martin Bregman, quoted in THE LOS ANGELES TIMES, January 6, 1994

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