A Conversation with Hollywood Producer William Fay: The Man Behind “300” and “Clash of the Titans”


By Julia Davis
September 10, 2010

Published in the summer 2010 issue of MyLIFE magazine

clash_of_the_titans.png
The snake-headed Medusa and actor Sam Worthington as Perseus, from a scene in “Clash of the Titans.”

The remake of the cult film “Clash of the Titans” smashed opening weekend records, bringing in an estimated $61.4 million in sales over three days. The film kept its No. 1 spot at the box office two weekends in a row, bringing in a total of $110.5 million.

“We’re very proud of the film and its success, domestically and worldwide,” said William Fay, executive producer of “Clash of the Titans” and president of production at Legendary Pictures. We had the opportunity to sit down for lunch with the renowned Hollywood producer, to discuss some of the emerging technologies in Hollywood and how they are changing the landscape.

During our visit with Fay, he confirmed that there would be a sequel to “Clash of the Titans.”

“Legendary Pictures has multiple titles in various stages of production and development,” he told us. “Currently, a sequel is in the works for ‘Clash Of The Titans’ and is planned for a release date in April 2012. We’re not planning on slowing down anytime soon,” he said.

For Fay, success seems to come with every release he’s involved with. Over the years, he has produced blockbusters such as “300,” “Independence Day,” “Superman Returns,” and “The Patriot,” to name a few.

“’Independence Day’” was, without a doubt, an unforgettable experience,” Fay commented. “We produced it with a group of friends and colleagues, working as a team through trial and error. The film was made for $65 million and had a box office return of $815 million dollars worldwide.”

We asked Fay about the advantages and disadvantages of filming using green screens. Some actors have described their use as somewhat isolating and lonely. “‘Clash of the Titans’ and ‘300’ set new trends in filmmaking. ‘300’ was done almost exclusively in a warehouse in Montreal, with only one scene—the messenger’s arrival on a horse—filmed as an exterior shot outside of the warehouse. Green technology is challenging to actors. They have to create images in their mind with only a prop to suggest the presence of a figure or physical threat for the actors to react or respond to. They have to adapt, as this is the new trend and way of the future. In the process, new ways have been developed to help actors in fully visualizing the scene on a display that shows the storyboard and its actual [and fictitious] participants. This process is making it more realistic and easier for actors to adapt to,” he responded.

Unlike “300,” “Clash of the Titans” had a lot of on-location shooting on the island of Tenerife, which is part of the Canary Islands and is south of Morocco. Other locations included Ethiopia and Wales.

As we continue to follow Fay’s projects with great interest and anticipation, we’ll look forward to his continued success at the box office.

Post a comment