5×5 With The Hook: Dave Blass.

Dave Blass is one of the luckiest humans on the planet.

Not to mention one of the hardest-working souls on Earth. And no, he didn’t pay me to type that nor do I want to marry him, thank you very much…

534932239_MI_6501_37620319A219330C44E8275B226C543EDave’s the guy on the right that makes TV guys like Matty Ryan look so cool...

The truth is, and I mean this in all seriousness as a comic writer… I respect the hell out of Dave Blass. In fact, if we were facing a horde of flesh-eating zombies (as opposed to a horde of veggie-eating zombies) I’d fight like a menopausal female wildcat to save his life. Actually, who am I trying to kid? I’d shove him into that horde as fast as look at him, just to save my cowardly existence.

But I’d feel really, really bad about it. For at least a week. Well, five days at the bare minimum.

However, if by some miracle we survived the zombie apocalypse, Dave Blass would be able to rebuild the most bitchin’ world you’ve ever seen because he’s the most kick-ass production designer and art director in the Multiverse, bitches! Sorry, about that, I get carried away when it comes to people that I truly respect and admire – but only because there are so few of them.

(By the way, you’ll see examples of Dave’s work peppered throughout this brilliant piece of bloggage.)

LR-Sewer

No, this isn’t my basement… but Dave and his team could design me a headquarters if they like…

Dave’s credits are as long as your arm – if you’re Tyrion Lannister – and they’re more impressive than Halle Berry’s rack in Swordfish. You can click here for the full story on Dave Blass or you can take in the abridged version below.

Guys like Dave – not that there are many guys like Dave Blass – are the unsung heroes of the TV and film world. Sure, we’ll always need writers and actors (and they know it) but without people to bring worlds to life from sketches and notes, what do you have? A whole lotta nothin’, that’s what.

Dave’s been responsible for the production design and art direction for television series such as:

  • Quantico
  • Constantine (Man, did I love this show! NBC has earned my wrath for cancelling it – not that they care.)
  • Justified (Another underrated drama chock full of old school cowboy action.)
  • Longmire (Modern-day cowboys again. Cowboys rock.)
  • Rectify
  • Cold Case
  • ER (A true television classic.)

He’s dabbled in feature films like:

He’s written, directed, produced (executively and otherwise), ran the craft service table, organized the Teamsters, sewn the costumes, parked cars and even snapped that clicky board before each camera take. Or so I’ve heard.

For his work accurately portraying the State of Kentucky on Justified he was awarded the honor of “Kentucky Colonel” in 2011. Isn’t that awesome? This is a man at the top of his game, kids. You give Dave a ball of wool, a box of toothpicks, some duct tape and roll of industrial-grade plastic and he’ll give you Gotham City in the winter.

LR-MillhouseThe ultimate nerd cave, courtesy of Dave and Blackhawk Design.

His work on DC Comics’ Constantine has elevated him to godlike status in the bloodshot eyes of nerds like me, but the coolest thing about Dave Blass?

He’s the “Production Guy” on the coolest, most surreal new show on TV right now, AMC’s Preacher. This show is all about a small town preacher (shocker, right?) possessed by an entity called Genesis, that is the offspring of a angel and demon. Rogue angels are hunting Genesis and soon the whole town – which is on the eve of destruction anyway – is drawn into the fray. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. I cannot begin to articulate how much I love everything about Preacher, my friends; it really is the wildest ride you’ll ever experience without the aid of hallucinogens.

Cg58bm7U4AAaEG5Dave’s latest work will be seen on the Fox series, Pitch. The series, set in the confines of Major League Baseball, sets its focus on a young female pitcher who becomes the first woman to play in the league, when she is chosen to play for the San Diego Padres. My daughter, a teenage feminist, is excited beyond description by this series, so scoring this 5×5 with Dave has earned me some “Cool Dad” points. Which I’ll lose soon, no doubt…

All right, that’s enough of the sappy stuff; let’s get on with the 5×5 goodness!

ONE)  Is there any fictional world in any film/television show you wished you designed?

I would love to design one of the new Star Wars films. As they are remakes and not “reboots” it would be cool to expand on the existing architecture, but I would never want to be the guy who has to redesign the Millennium Falcon..

breakTWO)  Personally, I think you’re the luckiest Dave on earth for landing the Preacher gig; that show is a helluva ride! What’s the coolest thing you’ve worked on so far in Jesse Custer’s world?

As far as Preacher, designing the iconic church was amazing. We built it from the ground up in 27 days.

Dominic Cooper as Jesse Custer, Joseph Gilgun as Cassidy, Anatol Yusef as DeBlanc - Preacher _ Season 1, Episode 1 - Photo Credit: Lewis Jacobs/Sony PIctures Televsion/AMC

I bet the last session you had in church was boring by comparison, right?

breakTHREE) You’re a seasoned TV veteran. Any advice for pitchers like me who have pretty much given up on seeing their “work” translated to the small screen?

If you have a dream, go after it.

The world is full of people that will tell you that it’s impossible, that your dreams are stupid and you should be realistic. They don’t want you to follow your dreams because it makes it easier on them for not following theirs. Every time I want to give up on this crazy business because I am NOT designing Star Wars, I think not of how far I have to go, but how far I have come and it gives me a bit of inspiration.

(I’ll say what we’re all thinking, “AWESOME!!!”)

breakFOUR)  As an official Kentucky Colonel do you get all the popcorn chicken you can eat?

Sadly I don’t get free stuff at KFC. I tried my Colonel card once and the poor kid freaked out. Some day I will get to use it at the Kentucky Derby to get into the Colonel box, which will be something cool.

breakFIVE)  Oreo is releasing a Swedish Fish flavor. Is this a stroke of divine brilliance or a sign of the impending apocalypse?

A Swedish Fish flavored Oreo is like a reboot of Big Trouble in Little China.

Don’t.

Stop.

Go no further.

oreo-swedish-fish-010-tease-today-160812_f66881a348a1dd7cd09aa13c128e3385.today-inline-large

 

breakI’d say we’ve reached a natural stopping point, wouldn’t you? I want to thank Dave Blass for pausing from his oh-so-cool daily labors to inspire us today with his words of Blassy wisdom. And of course, thank you all for being here and making me feel a little less alone in the blogosphere.

See you in the lobby, kids…

About The Hook

Husband. Father. Bellman. Author of The Bellman Chronicles. Reader of comic books and observer and chronicler of the human condition. And to my wife's eternal dismay, a mere mortal and non-vampire. I'm often told I look like your uncle, cousin, etc. If I wore a hat, I'd hang it on a hat rack in my home in Niagara Falls, Canada. You can call me The Hook, everyone else does.
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18 Responses to 5×5 With The Hook: Dave Blass.

  1. susielindau says:

    I agree about the fish Oreos. Is that really a thing?
    Set designs can really impact a show. I’m glad to meet you, Dave!

  2. An Amazing guy (Constantine was a cool show) Hopefully with him involved, Pitch will offer real plots and characters that develop over time. Fingers crossed. Really tired of TV shows relying on preachy preachy over some current/trendy topic instead of insisting on good writing which makes a show not only great, but memorable and a classic. Cool interview!

  3. Austin says:

    Preacher is a very cool show. Looking forward to Season #2 to see where they go…

  4. davidprosser says:

    Savour those Brownie points from your daughter they don’t seem to happen often or last for long. They leave home, have a family and still we look for those precious moments of approval when opening our mouths was worth it.
    Hugs

  5. Tara says:

    Swedish fish Oreos? Ew. Just – NO. I’m ashamed I’ve been in a restroom that looked very much like that, and I don’t want to talk about it. But …. PREACHER. It ROCKS.

  6. Outstanding interview. I love Swedish Fish so I guess I would like the Oreos.

  7. Awesomely cool interview! and yeah, I caught that line of advice I’d love to highlight again… “If you have a dream, go after it”… ❤ you, Hook.

  8. Paul says:

    Nicely done Hook – excellent interview.

  9. irusja11 says:

    This is so inspiring! I love the post:)

    irenethayer.com

  10. nbratscott says:

    Great 5X5 Hook!

  11. Ned's Blog says:

    Wow, fantastic dude. I’d like to see what Dave would design for a post-Swedish-fish-Oreo apocalypse.

  12. curvyroads says:

    Another cool 5×5, Robert! You know how to find em, for sure!

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