Gareth Smith and Jenny Lee, of Smith & Lee, are a husband-and-wife team who have carved themselves a special niche in the design industry- producing title sequences for film and television. They are behind memorable opening title sequences for director Jason Reitman’s films Thank You for Smoking, Juno, and Up in the Air, and more recently Nick and Nora’s Infinite Playlist directed by Peter Sollet.
“I’m a big fan of opening credits,” said Reitman, (the first director to hire the duo), in an interview with asap in 2007. “You walk out of your regular life, you walk into the cinema, and you want something that separates people from the commercials and the trailers for other films.”
Smith & Lee has certainly helped to spearhead the revival of the well-designed opening title sequence in feature films. For your visual inspiration, check out Smith & Lee’s work below:
Nick and Nora’s Infinite Playlist opening title sequence design/animation by Smith & Lee
Thank You for Smoking opening title sequence design/animation by Smith & Lee
Below is the highly acclaimed opening title sequence for Juno. Smith & Lee developed hand-crafted animation showing Juno walking through her neighborhood using more than 900 “xeroxed, hand colored cut-outs.”
Below is the full-frame version that Smith & Lee posted on its Vimeo page, stating “this is what the Juno title sequence looks like before the theaters apply the 1.85 matte to it. We like it because it shows some of the process behind the sequence. You’ll see edges of paper, hand-written reference numbers, registration marks, etc.”
See more examples and (behind-the-scenes photos for some of their projects) at Smith & Lee’s website: http://smithleedesign.com.
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