We had the good fortune of connecting with Alessandra Manias and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Alessandra, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I’m an Architect but I didn’t like waiting too long to see a project realized, so I worked 15 years in Italy in advertising , set design, commercials etc…. I had a lot of experience and I did very interesting projects but my dream was working in Film Industry. So I came here in Los Angeles with the idea to become a Production Designer and Art Director and I did it pretty fast.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Creativity is the key of my profession as Production Designer but it is only 50% of my job. I’m proud to share my different approach on it. I’m an Architect but I studied , and I’m still studying, Psychology and I’ve an MBA for 2 reasons. One. Psychology is very important to deeply understand the script, the intuition of the director, the characters, with the goal to create the perfect style and to communicate in the best way the story through the design (space, colours, objects, lights…) Two. Respecting the budget it is very important for a movie, in particular for independent and low budget movies; if you know how to manage costs, you can reach incredible results even if you don’t have big resources. Making movies for me is love, is the best way to express myself. Working in Art Department is super hard, sometimes frustrating, and the hours and commitment spent are often much more than the income, but creating new worlds from nothing, in very short time, is fulfilling my soul. Behind a movie there is incredible hard work and passion of all the people involved.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
The Los Angeles coast is incredible and very different. We can start from Venice beach, having a walk and see souvenirs stores, art, street artist and crazy people hanging around. If we want to have a long walk we can reach Santa Monica pier and eat a good lobster sandwich at The Albright. Santa Monica Promenade, aka 3rd Street, is full of stores and restaurants but I prefer it during the night because it changes in a live music area, with talented street musicians. If you have a convertible you have the best way to ride to Malibu, watch the Ocean and stop by for a drink or eat seafood in the beautiful beach restaurants along the PCH. About Dtla my favourite places are Art District and Little Tokyo , but the most characteristic in my opinion are the Districts for Fashion, Fabric, Flowers, Toys, places where I used to buy materials for movies. Hollywood is not my favourite area but Melrose and Sunset have very interesting stores for shopping and good restaurants. Beverly Hills is the place that you image after seeing hundreds of films with Rodeo Drive, ahahaha. I love hiking and visit art exhibition and museum. There is a lot to do everywhere and it is impossible to explain how much you can see and live in LA just in few days. I don’t even know after years.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I want to support all the women in Film Industry. I started thanks to their big support and recognition of my talent. I’m working with amazing Directors, Producers, Set Decorators, DP…. Strong , talented, empowered, sensitive women that little by little, with strong determination and incredible abilities are changing the world and the Industry in a better way.
the images of me are private, i’ve the rights and I agree you can use it