‘Noah’ Featurette Explores the Construction of the Ark

Published 1 year ago by

Noah is not only one of this month’s (for some, this year’s) most anticipated releases, it’s also a rather prickly discussion topic due to co-writer/director Darren Aronofsky’s interpretation of the Biblical flood story – one that Paramount Pictures has been keen to emphasize (with its recent marketing push) is an auteuristic vision, rather than a purist adaptation of the religious source material.

On the other hand, Aronofsky has long maintained that his cinematic take on the Noah’s Ark narrative – originally a graphic novel he co-wrote with Ari Handel (The Fountain) – can be considered a literal adaptation in certain regards, with regard to how his movie carries over more adult content from the Bible that “got censored out of our religious upbringing” at a younger age (see: Russell Crowe as Noah getting drunk on wine, etc.).

That philosophy was also applied to the film’s central set piece, as illustrated by the featurette included above; production designer Mark Friedberg (The Amazing Spider-Man 2) explains as such, while breaking down how the blueprints and dimensions for the enormous and highly-detailed practical Ark set – fleshed out using digital components – sprung from descriptions in the original Bible text.

Costar Emma Watson – who’s among those interviewed in said featurette – has previously indicated that the setting depicted in Aronofsky’s Noah has a fairly timeless design, rather than a distinctly ancient world or futuristic post-apocalyptic feel. It’s for reasons like that that Paramount Pictures has tweaked the film’s marketing, in order to include a disclaimer that warns about how the film takes “artistic license” with its source material, even though it’s also “true to the essence, values and integrity” of the original story, according to the studio.

noah movie russell crowe preview 570x294 Noah Featurette Explores the Construction of the Ark

Side-stepping the controversy talk for a moment, Noah certainly looks and sounds as technically-accomplished as Aronofsky’s previous directorial efforts, combing the phantasmagoric elements of The Fountain and dream-like editing of Black Swan, with a more accessible narrative than those films to bind the whole thing together (good news, for those who felt that the aforementioned Aronofsky movies bit off more than they could chew).

Aronofsky’s big-budget adventure still has a ways to go to making back its $130 million price, but with the majority of those U.S. moviegoers who drove Son of God to a $25 opening weekend apparently planning to see Noah when it hits theaters – while also taking into account the higher ticket price for 3D screenings in certain countries – early signs are that Noah shouldn’t just drown (my apologies for the bad pun) at the box office, as some have predicted.


Noah opens in theaters on March 28th, 2014.

Follow Sandy Schaefer on Twitter @feynmanguy
TAGS: Noah
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  1. By far, this is Aronofsky’s biggest budget movie, also with the most A-list actors he ever worked with.
    Will that be enough to guarantee box office success ? Dunno.
    Since this version of Noah is based on a graphic novel and NOT based on the Bible story, audience may be in for surprise/plot twist.

    That being said, I’ll wait for the film review first before seeing it.

    • @Mr. Obvious. Apparently this film is rubbing everyone the wrong way, and not just christians. The studio actually changed the marketing on the film without even telling Aronofsky. I am still interested in seeing this film though.

      • One of the issues I have heard is that the film portrays Noah as being more merciful and better in his judgement than God (stated by those who have read the script and been to pre-screenings). I can see that causing problems for many people.

  2. Caption for above picture:

    “Animal 24601!”

  3. Noah’s Arc always captured my imagination as a kid. For me, I am in the field of I don’t really care if people have aren’t all too happy, the subject is really cool to make a movie about. Plus from what I just saw, this movie has big elephant balls.

  4. This flick floats my boat; “Noah” way I would miss it. I have it on my Netflix list.

  5. there was never an ark, scientists have proven it would be impossible to build a ship that size at that time period, with those materials, not to mention all of Earth’s animals wouldn’t be in walking distance of Noah’s house. That being said, i am interesting in watching anything aronofsky makes.

    • Well…in the Bible story, it does take them a really long time to build the ark (5 years or more if my memory serves me right), so it is probable that something like that was possible to build, with enough time, and the desperation talked about in the featurette. As for the animals, at this time, all the continents were most likely still in one land mass. That, coupled with the 5 yeas to build the ark, suggests that all the animals could have made it there.

      I think this movie looks absolutely fantastic.

      • according to the bible the flood was 4,000 years ago. the continents were not all one land mass 4,000 years ago. science has proven that there was no flood 4,000 ago by dating trees, it has also proven that there were no animal migrations from where the ark supposedly landed, and finally science has proven that a ship of that size with that material could no have been built, nor could it have sailed on an ocean without twisting and buckling at the center. it is complete fiction.

  6. This film is going to make $500 Million Dollars Worldwide in its sleep. Can’t wait to see it.

  7. No CGI animals were harmed during the Great Flood.
    So rest easy P.E.T.A