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Production Team Takes ‘Sin City’ Sequel to a New Level

“There is only Sin City,” warns Rosario Dawson in the red-band trailer for “Sin City: A Dame to Kill For,” to be released Aug. 22. And sharp-eyed viewers will notice that it’s changed since their last visit.

The 2005 “Sin City,” directed by Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller, put the bold silhouettes of Miller’s graphic novel in motion. The new film is still stark black-and-white with splashes of color, but details — down to Mickey Rourke’s pores — are sharp as a samurai sword. It’s almost hyper-real.

“That’s what we wanted to do,” says visual effects supervisor Stefen Fangmeier. “I wanted to get more photorealism and yet have a strong graphic style, so we were trying to find a median between the two.”

Rodriguez shot the actors against greenscreen with minimal props and sets. Fangmeier and the Prime Focus visual effects team filled in much of the lighting and production design.

“We had an art director and myself picking wallpaper for every room, figuring out what the tiles would be like, what furniture would be there, all those things,” Fangmeier says. Meanwhile, Rodriguez was shooting other projects, but he’d review their work as they went. “It’s sort of like interior decorating for somebody who travels a lot,” Fangmeier quips.

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