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300: The Art of the Film Hardcover – January 2, 2007


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Dark Horse Books (January 2, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1593077017
  • ISBN-13: 978-1593077013
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 0.6 x 10.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #980,293 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Tara Bennett (formerly DiLullo) is the author of many movie and TV companion books including the upcoming 'Showrunners: The Art of Running a TV Show,' 'Sons of Anarchy: The Official Companion,' as well as 'The Art of Rio,''The Art of Epic,''The Art of 300,' 'The Art of Terminator Salvation' and the '24: The Official Companion Guides' (Seasons 1 through 6)series.

She co-wrote an Amazon Best Book of 2013: 'Fringe: September's Notebook' and 'Lost Encyclopedia' with Paul Terry for Bad Robot.

Tara also contributed to the media tie-in books 'The Making of the Fantastic Four,' 'The Official Firefly Companions Vol. 1, Vol. 2 and Vol. 3' and 'Firefly: Celebration'.

For her day job, Tara has written almost a thousand interviews and features for print and online publications, including The Walking Dead Magazine, Once Upon a Time Magazine, GRIMM Magazine, Lost Magazine, 24 Magazine, Buffy the Vampire Magazine, SCI FI Magazine, Today.com, Blastr, Fandango/Movies.com, Fancast/Xfinity, Snakkle, TV Geek Army, WSJ Speakeasy, Newsarama, and VFXWorld.com. She is the East Coast Editor for the world's premiere sci-fi/fantasy publication, SFX Magazine.

You can catch Tara as a frequent expert guest on a variety of film and TV related media programs such as Fictional Frontiers with Sohaib, Shaun Daily's TVTalk and You've Got Geek on You. She moderated the last two '24' panels at San Diego Comic Con. As part of her coverage work, she has visited the sets of countless TV productions including 'The Walking Dead,' 'Lost,' 'Heroes,' 'Chuck,' 'Stargate,' and films including 'Divergent,' 'Immortals,' 'The Book of Eli,' 'Jonah Hex' and 'The Last Airbender.'

As an adjunct professor, Tara teaches writing for television and film studies at Rowan University in New Jersey.

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Customer Reviews

I have a lot of other making of books & this one is very skimpy.
A. Grable
Having said that, "300: The Art of the Film" is a great addition to the movie.
Burt Reynolds
Great book with many pictures and a lot of history and info on how file made.
B Stalbaum

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Brandon J. Haynes on February 5, 2007
Format: Hardcover
The book is great at documenting the film progress but it LACKS completely in regards to the film still resolution. All of the great shots from the movie are blurry and pixelatd which really take away from the overall effect. They come off looking like bad scans. I would pass this book over in hopes of another release after the film and the movie studio invests in providing better photos.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 26, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Translating a graphic novel into the world of cinema can be a tricky business.

And the first step is concept art -- creating basic images of the characters, costumes, and important, visually-striking scenes. "300: The Art Of The Film" is crammed with such images, detailing virtually every part of the movie... but it's very skimpy on explanations and information.

It starts off with a couple of prefaces -- one by an expert on military history, and the other explaining the purpose of revealing the concept art. Then concept art itself: it basically outlines the story, beginning with the "inspection" of newborn Spartan boys and ending with another battle brewing between the Spartans and Persians.

These include pages and pages of rough sketches and detailed drawings for the cinematogrpahers, some representing only a few seconds (a fist hitting a slave's face). Then there are plenty of costume sketches, depictions of unreal-looking monsters, tents, and the gorgeous sets for things like Xerxes' opulant golden litter. Actually, it's more of a portable house.

But it has more than just concept art -- there are clay models, special effects shots, elaborate makeup and costume for things like the hunchbacked traitor, Xerxes' chain-porn costume, and things like knives stuck in a eye, and even green-screen shots before the CGI gloss was put on. And there are shots showing how they managed certain effects, like the people who controlled the animatronic "wolf."

And with every sketch and behind-the-scene shot, they show the finished result as it appears in the movie. A lot of them have the original art by Frank Miller as well, to show us how close the movie actually is to its source material. Visually speaking, it's a feast of behind-the-scenes information.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Parka TOP 50 REVIEWER on August 19, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Length: 0:30 Mins
This book doesn't explain much on the process of making the movie. Most of the art in the book lack captions. This book feels light in content simply for the fact that you don't get much information.

There are plenty of conceptual art, 3D renders and storyboards. But there seem to a lot of movie stills as well, to the effect that it felt that half the book contained movie stills. There are also a lot of 3 penciled storyboards that take one page to themselves. Certainly they don't deserve those sizes.

For a movie based on a graphic novel, I was expecting much more paintings to be included in the book. The movie was shot too stylistically that it's hard to imagine that there are not much more storyboard paintings.

(More pictures are available on my blog. Just visit my Amazon profile for the link.)
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Cat Silverthorne on January 12, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This book is a fascinating look at how the movie 300 was put together. It will be very pleasing to both Frank Miller and SFX fans. It goes into some detail about how the look of the film was achieved, but is a cursory look at the FX and serious computer FX enthusiasts may feel a bit short changed as the book doesn't really go into the nitty gritty of computer graphics, but it does show the general process from book to storyboard to film, and Zack Snyder's attention to detail. If you are a Gerry Butler fan, be warned that the book does not feature him prominently, but there are plenty of pictures where he is part of the shot. There is a serious mistake on the page that features Butler and his costuming. The text refers to him as "Gerald Butler" not Gerard, and that is an editing error that should have been caught. Maybe a second printing will correct the problem. I did like that the cover of the book is designed to look almost exactly like my copy of Miller's 300. They sit nicely side by side, and it was fascinating to take the orginal text and look at the movie's recreation of the shot. Overall, a fun book to own.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kory on July 17, 2007
Format: Hardcover
It seems that some people are having a hard time realizing that the title of this book includes "The Art of the Film" and are searching for filming procedures, or sociopolitical explanations on behalf of the film when, in fact, this IS an art book. And for what it is, it does a great job revealing the artistic vision behind the film 300. From makeup effects to storyboarding to the comic conversion of the film, "300: The Art of the Film" makes a stylistic presentation that is worthy of the aesthetic care of the movie itself. Anyone who is interested in the artistic background in the movie 300 will appreciate the clean layout and complete presentation of this book.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Burt Reynolds on March 29, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Film, as we've all come to now accept, is a very difficult media with which to work (and even moreso) fall in love with. Hollywood seldom puts out movies that make you FEEL the story. Yes, there are perhaps one or two per year that really do stand out, but that would most definately be the limit. Think of "Saving Private Ryan" or "You've Got Mail" or even "Lord of the Rings"--what do all of these pictures have in common? (1) Good acting, (2) good screenplays, (3) visually compelling cinematography, and (4) gripping soundtracks. All four of these elements make these three movies wonderful. These same characteristics can be found in far older pictures like "Citizen Kane" or "Patton."

The unique aspect of "300" is its cinematography. Set in front of green screens, the actors did their very best to act emotionally and physically to elements not present until post-production editing. That's what makes "300" so compelling and wonderful a movie. Yes, it incorporates the four elements mentioned above, but the reason people are flocking to watch this movie is because IT IS DIFFERENT. Sure, we've had movies based on comic books for quite some time...the original "Superman" TV shows and movie, "Spiderman", and the more recent additions. But NONE of these actually bring the comic world to the screen. The screenwriters tried to reform the comic book image to fit real life. In some cases it worked. In most it did not.

"300" was a comic book from the very first shot. No one wanted to make it "realistic" or "convincing." It was just made to look and feel like a comic book. And it works.

Having said that, "300: The Art of the Film" is a great addition to the movie.
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