“Guys and Dolls” screens at the Aero to celebrate the art of production design

Marlon Brando lives it up in “Guys and Dolls” Image courtesy of the Art Directors Guild Film Society

Marlon Brando lives it up in “Guys and Dolls”
Image courtesy of the Art Directors Guild Film Society

In the world of movie production design, going unnoticed can be high praise.

Flawless production design can immerse filmgoers in a magnificent new world, while poor execution may only remind them that what they’re watching is in fact fiction.

Oscar-nominated production designer Oliver Smith had no trouble transporting film audiences from inside the cinema to the windswept plains of “Oklahoma,” New York’s Central Park in “The Band Wagon,” or the dance halls of Havana in “Guys and Dolls.”

The Art Directors Guild Film Society and American Cinematheque combine forces on Sunday for a special screening of 1955’s “Guys and Dolls” at the Aero Theatre, followed by a panel discussion starring several Smith protégés who are making movies today. Panelists include production designers Jeffrey Beecroft, (“Dances with Wolves” and “Transformers: The Age of  Extinction”), Howard Cummings (“The Usual Suspects,” The Knick” and “Behind the Candelabra”), Mayne Berke (“The Princess Diaries” and “S.W.A.T”), and Kalina Ivanov (“Little Miss Sunshine,” “Smash” and “Poltergeist”).

“Oliver Smith: The Hollywood Musical by Design / Guys and Dolls” kicks off the Art Directors Guild’s film series “Production Design: Looking at Nothing Seeing Everything,” which includes special screenings and discussions through July at both the Aero in Santa Monica and Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood.

— Christina Campodonico

“Oliver Smith: The Hollywood Musical by Design / Guys and Dolls” starts at 5:30 p.m. Sunday at the Aero Theatre, 1328 Montana Ave., Santa Monica. Tickets are $7 to $11. Call (323) 466-3456 or visit adg.org.