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Billie Scheepers / 24.01.2016

Sir Kenneth “Ken” Adam OBE is a German born British motion picture production and set designer.  He was born in 1921 in Tiergartenstrasse and studied in Berlin before moving to London with his family in 1934.  He attended St Paul’s School in London and then trained to be an architect.  At the outbreak of the war he joined the British Army (The Pioneer Corps) and then in 1940 he entered the RAF as a fighter pilot (Squadron 609).  It’s worth noting that if Sir Adams had been shot down and captured he would likely have been executed as a traitor that held as a prisoner of war.  After the war, Adams entered the film industry immediately.  Some of his biggest achievements have been working on the James Bond Films in the 1960s and 1970s, and Stanley Kubrick’s The Madness of King George.  He also designed the famous car from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.  He won his first Oscar on Kubrick’s Barry Lyndon.

“Film design was a fantastic way of expressing myself, sketches and sets and so on and it was really a way of creating my own life, my own background and translating that into film sets.”

Ken Adam

“I remember when I was a fighter in the Second World War, there were whole months full of fear. When you are having to face death all the time, it’s a completely different experience to anything else but a very important experience. I was scared all the time. I didn’t mind it, it became part of one’s philosophy and you became used to it.”

Ken Adam

“I’m a fairly normal person but I’m also a bit of an adventurer and so anything in films that had adventure used to appeal to me, and still does today actually.”

Ken Adam

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