Trailblazing production designer Jan Scott, who won more primetime Emmys than any other woman and any other production designer, died Thursday April 17 of natural causes in L.A. She was 88.
The future president of the Art Directors Guild and a governor of the Acad of Television Arts & Sciences (whose Goldenson Theater bears her mark as a design consultant) spent her childhood in Carbondale, Ill., and later studied at the U. of Chicago where she received degrees in architecture and fine arts. She was further educated at the Art Institute of Chicago and MIT, and decided to utilize her education and knowledge of the arts in the area of film production design.
Her favorite career experiences catered to her desire to protect the original character of historic sites while mastering the nuances of the surrounding environment. For example, her work on telepic “The Love Letter” became a labor of love that allowed her to preserve the integrity of the shoot’s critical location and make it accurate in both the 1860s and present day eras.
She was given a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2001 by the Art Directors Guild for her record 18 Primetime Emmy nominations, among other outstanding achievements in art direction.
Her Emmy-winning or -nommed credits include “Eleanor & Franklin: The White House Years” and “Evergreen,” “The Scarecrow,” “Shadow Game,” “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” and “Studs Lonigan.” Other work includes “Grace & Glorie,” “The Summer of Ben Tyler,” “A Promise Kept: The Oksana Baiul Story” and “Lucky/Chances.” Credits also include “Roots,” “Trilogy of Terror” and 1973 remake of “Miracle on 34th Street.”
Theatrical production design include work on the Jamie Lee Curtis starrer “Grandview, U.S.A.”
Besides ATAS’ Leonard H. Goldenson state-of-the-art theater complex in North Hollywood, she is also known for another architectural benchmark, when she served as supervisor of the creation and placement of the life-size Emmy sculptures for the Television Academy’s Hall of Fame Plaza, which she also had designed along with its fountain.
At time of death, she was an active member in the Art Directors Branch of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences and was in the early stages of her directorial debut for indie Western pic, “Getting Home.”
She is survived by a sister, niece and nephew.
Memorial services will be held 11 a.m. Sunday May 4 in the ATAS Leonard H. Goldenson Theater, 5230 Lankershim Blvd. In North Hollywood.