Oral Histories

Interview of Joseph Francuz

Motion picture scenic artist and fine artist who worked at J.C. Backings for many years. Worked on One From the Heart, Rocky II, and Chaplin.
The Crafts in Hollywood: Production Design
Film and Television
Collings, Jane
Francuz, Joseph
Persons Present:
Francuz and Collings.
Place Conducted:
Francuz's home in Los Angeles, California.
Supporting Documents:
Records relating to the interview are located in the office of the UCLA Library’s Center for Oral History Research.
Interviewer Background and Preparation:
The interview was conducted by Jane Collings, principal editor and interviewer, UCLA Center for Oral History Research; Ph.D., Critical Studies in Film and Television, UCLA.
Processing of Interview:
The interviewer prepared a timed log of the audio recording of the interview. Francuz was given the opportunity to review the log in order to supply missing or misspelled names and to verify the accuracy of the content. The corrections made were entered into the text without further editing or review on the part of the Center for Oral History Research staff.
1.75 hrs.
Regents of the University of California, UCLA Library.
Series Statement:
This series of interviews was undertaken in collaboration with the Art Directors Guild. Its aim is to document the lives and work of Guild members and staff who have made a significant contribution to film and television history. Interviews capture the work of title artists, set designers, art directors, production designers, and many other categories. The contribution of labor unions in shaping the conditions of the work is also addressed.
Family background--Arts training at ArtCenter College of Design as a youth--Attends Otis College of Art and Design--Begins a career as a scenic artist--Trains under Bob Schifo while working for Sid and Marty Krofft--Goes to work at J.C. Backings--Benjamin Resella--A highly accomplished crew at J.C. Backings--Clark Provins--Works for Marian Westall for a time--The risky and physically demanding aspects of the job--Took particular pride in work for One from the Heart, Rocky II, The Muppet Movie, Melrose Place, and Chaplin--Francuz’s own art practice--The rapid decline of hand-painted backings work.