Production Designer - Philip Messina
Built and filmed mostly in Atlanta, Georgia, we battled budget, time, and weather to get the sets ready for this film. Actually, BOTH films, as we did Mockingjay Part One and Part Two at the same time. Even with the assistance of VFX to extend and complete many sets, this was a huge build, with more steel used than I have ever seen on a project. As the sets featured in District 13 are based around the idea of a repurposed, underground nuclear weapons facility, many of the sets are circular in plan, and feature concrete and steel construction. We also took advantage of many locations that had deep, coffered concrete ceilings - such as parking structures, and the basement of an old department store.
The stairway we built for the scene where the residents escape down to the bomb shelter, was built outside in the parking lot of the studio we were at. Though relatively simple in its concept, constructing the set outside was problematic, as again, the weather often worked against us (think rain, ice and snow when trying to weld). Then there was the scaffolding to not only hold it all up, but also support all of the actors running up and down it, SPFX rain rigs, lighting rigs, etc. Designer Phil Messina joked that the outer structure was almost more impressive than the inside!