This past weekend I was lucky enough to attend Leakycon. For those who aren’t aware of Leakycon, it is an event that celebrates the wonder of J.K. Rowling, the boy who lived and the incredible fandom that worships them. During Leakycon I was able to sit down with several notable names that have been a part of the Harry Potter franchise including storyboard artist Jim Cornish, who worked on several of the Harry Potter films, Dan Fogler one of the stars of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and finally Evanna Lynch aka Luna Lovegood.
Check out a portion of the interview with Jim Cornish below and if you’re interested in the uncut audio version click the link to the Speakin’ Geek podcast and you’ll be able to hear the full interview in all its audio glory.
I was looking through your CV, and the kind of stuff you’ve worked on is incredible. You’ve worked on Gravity, you’ve worked on the Dark Knight, Batman Begins, one of your first films was Event Horizon a very iconic looking film and a cult classic, so I’m not sure if anyone sets out to be a storyboard artist but what got you interested in art?
I’ve always kind of been able to draw that was the one thing I could do, not many other things but that I could get away with, and I went like so many people of my age went to see Star Wars and I fell in love with the film got the ‘Art of’ book shortly after seeing the movie and that was the point I figured people create them, make them, design them, fashion them visually and the aesthetic and that’s what really got me hooked on them. Being able to do what I love doing which is drawing in a film background for film, so that was the moment.
It’s funny that you should mention Star Wars got you into it because you’re now working as the storyboard artist on the Han Solo film. So what has that been like crafting and setting up the world you lived in when you were young?
It’s bonkers it feels like it’s gone full circle and hopefully, there’s a lot more to come. Yeah it’s weird as you start to see things from the inside, and nothing can quite prepare you for that because you go back to that mindset of when you were a child, and then you go full circle and you start to see all the little things and the nuances that we all knew that happened in the film industry and you think somehow that it’s not going to be like that, and of course it’s a job like any other and by that I mean the different projects all seem to suffer the same types of problems and you can see where things are changing and problems come, problems go and problems get solved so yeah it’s great fun to be in it and be part of it. It’s cinematic history and when you work on things like that, or you work on Bond films or Harry Potter films, you know big franchises that have been going for long periods of time and mean a lot to a lot of people it’s quite an honour to be a small cog in that huge machine.
What do your family think, does your family have an interest in your work because I know family can be quite deprecating.
Well, I try to get there first, I get my defense in there first. My wife has had to put up with a lot bless her, we seldom go to see films because I’m a pain to watch movies with. My children, yeah they’re slightly bored of it now, but I don’t mean that in a bad way. It’s just that’s what dad does, and they very rarely see me because I’m out of the house at 6 o’clock in the morning and I don’t get home until 8 o’clock in the evening. When they do see me, they’re like what are you doing, oh you’re drawing that. It’s nice to have that that they pull you down to earth again and talk about Maths and Geography and English and exams, so yeah they put up with a lot because they don’t see me.
Jim Cornish was a highlight of Leakycon, learning about his life and his career was fascinating, and this particular interview should be listened to if you’re someone interested in art. The full interview with Jim Cornish and several other guests is available to listen from the Speakin’ Geek podcast here. If you were at Leakycon this weekend be sure and let us know how you got on.