About ALEX PROYAS in Conversation
Born to Greek parents in Egypt, Proyas relocated to Australia with his family when he was three years old. He began making films at age ten and went on to attend the Australian Film Television and Radio School along with Jane Campion and Jocelyn Moorhouse.
Spirits of the Air, Gremlins of the Clouds (1987) marked Proyas' feature debut as director and screenwriter. Set in a post-apocalyptic world, the film, with its stylized production design and aural texture, was atypical of standard Australian fare, more closely resembling a longform music video.
Proyas continued to hone his craft helming TV advertisements for products like Nike, Nissan and Swatch, and directing videos for such artists as Sting, INXS and Crowded House.
In 1993 Proyas was tapped to helm the screen adaptation of James O'Barr's comic strip The Crow (1994). Although reviews were generally favorable, most singling out the production values which created a colorless rain-soaked wasteland that invoked comparisons with Ridley Scott's seminal Blade Runner (1982) and Tim Burton's Batman (1989).
After a four-year absence he returned with another thriller, Dark City (1998), about an amnesiac who may or may not have been a serial killer.
Garage Days (2002) marked Proyas' return to his homeland, Australia: the movie tells the story of a young Sydney garage band desperately trying to make it big in the competitive world of rock 'n' roll.
In 2004 Proyas returned to Hollywood: he directed I, Robot (2004), a science-fiction film suggested by the 'Isaac Asimov' short story compilation of the same name that starred Will Smith.
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