Argo – Interview with a Legend

Following on from our recent article on the work done by Jack Kirby on the pre-production film Lords of Light I got the chance to interview Barry Ira Geller about his work on the movie, working with some very talented men and whats coming up next!
 >>Firstly, it must have been fantastic working with such a talented group of people on a innovative project, was there anyone at the time you wanted to work with but couldn’t get hold off?

During our meetings it was all business. I met each man clearly 50% on, as a peer in that they also got inspiration from my ideas and responses —  and we went on from there to effectively come up with visionary design work and plans, based upon the purposes and goals I’d laid out. However, sometimes after various meetings with John Chambers, Jack Kirby, or Ray Bradbury I would jump for joy in my car going back to the office; I was in literal Heaven 🙂

With my Laser Optics scientist Don Broadbent, I wanted to bring in Juris Upatniks — the inventor of physical Holography. I was talking to — and received design presentations from the Architects of the Atlanta Airport and the World’s Fair building for Montreal. Truth is at the time I was of the mind I could get in touch with anyone in the world, was just a matter of time.

>>What was it about the story that made you want to go on and turn it not only into a film but be the inspiration for a theme park that would have dwarfed anything else at the time?

The brilliant Reality of the character’s lives I felt mirrored in modern archetypical society.

The Theme park was initially concieved as a way to finance the film. Then that conception blew up everwhere and became one giant kaliedescope of continuing creative and financial possibilities to explore the interface of Science and Science Fiction. With the development of the Science Fiction Land Foundation, who had the authority to develop new inventions and technologies, communication went out to many different Fortune 500 companies to take part in the Project, as to restaurants and parking, who would be contributing scientists and other financial needs.

>>The concepts for Science Fiction Land are quite ambitious, what was going to be the next step after the concept art?

The Science Fiction Land concepts were certainly abitious, but I told Jack to create drawings which we could use for both the Film and Theme Park. Jack was incendiary, even amazing / confusing my supervising producer.

The “Next Step” was already being accomplished with Architects and Engineers in various planning stages. Unfortunately (as the saying goes) things got cut off mid-stream.

>>Jack Kirby was an iconic artist, what was it like to work with him on a subject that he had such a passion for? and do you think this work inspired some of his later comic book characters he came up with himself?

Jack only worked on stuff he had a passion for. When he assimilated my plans for Lord Of Light, became a creative bulldozer in his visualizations. I just had to give him my concept, discuss things for a few hours, then I came back to the most professional visualized drawing in the world. Personally for me, it showed me that Imagination really ruled the world, and that, with respect, caring, and incredible vision, Jack and I achieved an amazing creation together.

>>With the advances in technology and film making would you ever consider going back to the story and trying to develop it into a film now?

That is happening right now 🙂 The current Technology is astonishing.  Let’s hope current plans get finalized. Here’s a sneek: Ballywood.


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