Gotham City is as much of a character as many of its infamous residents. Gotham is just as important to the Batman mythos as say the Joker or even Batman himself (it was the corrupt city that created him). Director Tim Burton understood this. His run at the Bat-franchise depicts a city that is dark, complex, and visually stimulating. Not only is his take on Gotham City completely original and unique but the limited use of CGI meant that each set was hand-built in the studio. These large set designs created for Batman and Batman Returns are the inspiration for my new project.
Some of the best scenes in both movies take place high above the streets of Gotham. Focusing mainly on the rooftop designs from Batman Returns, I am going to create a miniaturized version of Gotham City. I have pulled screenshots from the movie and the behind-the-scenes documentary to use for reference. Here is a layout of what I expect to accomplish with this project:
Each week I will post my progress including the materials I use for those who want to create their own miniature buildings at home. Since Mattel does not currently offer a diorama or playset for its 6 inch action figures (DC Universe Classics, DC Unlimited), I thought it would be fun to make my rooftop scenario as close to scale with those action figures as possible. Due to the exaggerated size of many of these buildings and the lack of space in my home, it will not be exact.
For my first rooftop, I chose this cool gothic window. This set can be seen in the movie when Batman and Catwoman have their first encounter and later when Penguin offers Catwoman a victory drink and marriage proposal (of course, she turns him down and he sends her flying through the air by means of an umbrella around the neck).
The window frame was molded from Creative Paperclay. I have used this product in the past with great results. It took a little over a day to completely dry. There is some minor cracking but nothing that cannot be easily fixed. The base is made from wood that can be purchased from most Michaels and art stores. I applied Houseworks Square Butt Shingle Strips to the roof that I purchased on Ebay for added detail.
This is my progress thus far. I plan to work on it more this week. Be sure to check back for updates!