Brigitte Helm in L’Argent/Money (1928, dir. Marcel L’Herbier)
1930s imagining of 1980s New York via the sci-fi musical Just Imagine (1930, dir. David Butler) More on the building of the set here. The opening scenes of the film, which feature this cityscape, can be seen here.
Buildings 250 stories high!…traffic on nine levels…rockets that shoot from star to star…airplanes that land on the roofs of buildings…a whole meal in a capsule that can be swallowed in one gulp… No — this isn’t a Jules Verne dream induced by a Welsh rarebit. It’s New York in 1980, as foretold in the new Fox picture, Just Imagine!
In 1980, people have serial numbers, not names, marriages are all arranged by the courts…Prohibition is still an issue…Men’s clothes have but one pocket. That’s on the hip…but there’s still love! Don’t laugh! Our grandaddies laughed at the thought that men might fly! Fantastic? Certainly—but stranger things have come to pass than those which have been portrayed in this dream of New York of A.D. 1980!
-excerpted from Just Imagine's promotional campaign materials, reprinted in Ruth Waterbury's Photoplay: The aristocrat of motion picture magazines
Douglas Fairbanks on the Moorish/Art Deco-inspired palace sets of The Thief of Bagdad (1924, dir. Raoul Walsh)
Art direction by William Cameron Menzies.
Lionel & John Barrymore and Joan Crawford during the filming of an “exterior” scene for Grand Hotel (1932, dir. Edmund Goulding) The art deco-style hotel entrance, a front built on a soundstage, was designed by art director Cedric Gibbons. (via)