Designer Daniel Kleinman and Framestore tackled the Octopus in Spectre’s main title sequence.
“I don’t have any preconceived ideas,” said Kleinman. “Anything stored up or saved up from other things when I come to the job, it’s important that the ideas and visuals are narratively driven. In most Bond films there’s a theme that runs throughout. That will be the thing that I take and run with, try to find the visual metaphors, and have some fun with the idea of it.”
Framestore’s artists received word of key elements and started to block out the initial storyboard with some pre-visualization work.
“Generally with Bond titles, the motion and flow of things is key,” said Framestore’s executive creative director William Bartlett. “Plotting the sequence out with camera moves and segues really helps, even if only with the use of placeholder image, we start to see it, and get a feel for the piece. It is,” he says, in the words of director Mendes, “an overture; you reveal some of the themes you’ll see later on, present some in an abstract way, but at the time it’s just an image, something to come back to later. It’s something we think about quite carefully when we’re working’.
Primary elements included the octopus, and a focus on love and relationships, not typical of recent Bonds. Of course, there are the staples, girls, guns, the occasional skull, to remind us of the heritage surrounding the film.
‘”Writing’s on the Wall” is, in essence, a love song, which is strange because Spectre is such a sinister word,” Kleinman added. “It’s actually one of few instances that the title doesn’t appear in the lyrics at all. It’s an interesting dichotomy, trying to make a long song at once ominous and sexy, reminding us of the love story behind all of this Bond action.’”
Bartlett notes that the pace of the song certainly impacted the work, “It’s very important that the audio and visuals work well together. It is tempting to put every single thing on a clear beat, but it would feel a bit obvious; we actually refrained from trying to cram things in, slowed it down and took out some scenes to allow the piece to breathe. It’s more interesting to look at fewer scenes, and work on blending them together well.”