Set Design: Turning an LA Sound Stage into a NYC Apartment

20 Jul

Actress Kristen Johnston on the set of “The Exes.”

I’ve always been fascinated by set design.

It’s an art form, really, to take the cold box of a sound stage and turn it into an authentic, lived-in space that can tell as much about a character as the script itself.

We’ve explored the genius set design of Nora Ephron movies here and here, and taken a tour of Phoebe’s ecelectic apartment on Friends here.

Today, I came across this article in the New York Daily News about a new show on Nick at Nite (I know, who knew they had new shows?) called “The Exes.” Not quite sure about the premise of the show, but the article sparked my interest because of the peek it offered into the design of the show’s set.

Actress Kristin Johnson worked closely with set designers Wendell Johnson and Ron Olsen to create an apartment for her lawyer character that felt believable. While the TV-size living room is a bit of stretch, I think they did a good job on the rest of the “apartment.”

What do you think?

Exes living room

See what I mean about the living room? I guess this it’s kind of impossible to have a real New York City living room on a sitcom…not a lot of room to work with!
Exes kitchenI like the open shelving in the kitchen and the oven stacked over the dishwasher. It’s always interesting to see what designers put in the kitchen for the characters because it reveals so much. Remember Jerry and his cereal?


Exes mirror

Exes tableThese last two additions are my favorite, because they show personality. The mirror is a flea market find painted a brilliant bright orange and the reclaimed wood table is beautiful, apparently built from a drawing by Johnston.

What do you think? Did they do a good job of creating a real space for a New York lawyer?

All photos via New York Daily News.

PS. I’m not getting paid to promote this show or Nick at Nite. I actually never heard of the show until the set design article caught my eye!

6 Responses to “Set Design: Turning an LA Sound Stage into a NYC Apartment”

  1. Leah July 20, 2012 at 2:30 pm #

    Katie, In the Spring I will be in a play at Circuit Playhouse that is set in a New York loft apartment. You should come with me one day to the theatre and I will show you the set. It’s called “Time Stands Still.”

    • Katie July 22, 2012 at 9:01 pm #

      How fun! That’d be great!

  2. Morgan July 27, 2012 at 1:57 am #

    That is so neat! Love this post and the behind the scenes look!

    • Katie July 28, 2012 at 11:16 am #

      Thanks Morgan! I love when shows give let us look behind the scenes too!

  3. lmeschi July 27, 2012 at 1:58 am #

    Hmmm funny – my comments are listed under the wrong name! Silly gmail/wordpress.

    • Katie July 28, 2012 at 11:17 am #

      haha, so weird!

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