Production Design Masterclass: Michael Shaw on Orange is the New Black

Special Event
Theater 1–4:30pm
  • Regular $60
  • Media Center Members $40


1pm - "Orange is the New Black" episode
2:15-3pm – Coffee Break
3–4:30pm – Conversation with Michael Shaw


Production Design literally sets the stage for every film, television series, and even advertising. It builds the world that immerses the audience and suspends our disbelief. It gets the actors into character with hair and make up, the right clothes, and exquisitely detailed props that lend another layer of reality to a fictional creation.  

Join this masterclass, showcasing the talents of Michael Shaw production designer for “Orange Is The New Black”.

It can be easy to admire the production design of epic period pieces and soaring sci-fi, but what of the details of every day life? Shaw and his team’s expert work on one of Netflix’s first breakout hits can be camouflaged by their skill – you mean it’s not actually shot in a prison, but on a sound stage in Queens?

Shaw will show one of his favorite episodes from this season of "Orange is the New Black", and discuss his inspiration for this – as well as his other work on Showtime’s “The Big C” and indie favorite films Boys Don’t Cry, You Can Count on Me and A Home at the End of the World, among many others. Shaw will elucidate the hows and whys of good production design, how the art department’s many facets – from set construction to costuming, painted backgrounds to special effects – work in tandem with the vision of the director, the lens of the cinematographer, and the writer’s words to create a fully immersed world for us.

About Michael Shaw
Michael’s impressive design credits include the award winning Boys Don’t Cry for which Hilary Swank won her first Oscar, You Can Count on Me starring Laura Linney and Mark Ruffalo; A Home At The End Of The World based on Pulitzer prize winning author Michael Cunningham’s book and starring Colin Farrell and Robin Wright; August Rush with Robin Williams and Freddy Highmore; and Copout staring Bruce Willis.

Michael Shaw settled in New York City after studying painting, sculpture & film at the Rhode Island School of Design. While constructing scenery by day to support his fine art career by night, one of Michael’s first design jobs; a short film titled THE ROOM won top prizes at Cannes, Sundance, and MOMA in 1993. Once bitten, Michael realized Production Design was the perfect career to mold all his creative interests under one roof. Consequently, Michael approaches every film as an artist.

Michael’s television credits include three seasons of “THE BIG C” staring Laura Linney for Showtime and three seasons of the highly acclaimed Netflix show “Orange Is The New Black,” as well as over 75 commercials. He is currently at work on the upcoming Showtime series “Billions”, starring Paul Giamatti and Damian Lewis.

Critical acclaim for Orange Is The New Black:

…filled with the entire range of human emotion and stories, all of which are brought vividly to life…” – Hank Stuever, The Washington Post

It constantly offers more than you expect…” – Tim Goodman, The Hollywood Reporter

…this is the most impressive group of female characters ever assembled in a series…” – Mary McNamara, Los Angeles Times

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