Andrew Droz Palermo, cinematographer on Moon Knight‘s third and fourth episodes, has discussed avoiding the dreary color palette of some MCU films.
Moon Knight was a fairly unconventional entry to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Its story about a protagonist coming to terms with his own dissociative identity disorder, the use of England and Egypt as settings rather than the US, its lack of connections to the broader MCU and its use of animal-headed ancient Egyptian gods in major roles all set it apart from other Marvel Studios projects. However, the differences didn’t end there, with one of the series’ cinematographers recently revealing they took steps to ensure the series stood out visually as well.
Some previous Marvel Studios projects have come under fire for their flatter color palette, giving scenes a murkier and less vibrant appearance. Such color palettes lack the variety and distinction in color that can make an image pop, giving it that comic book look. While this isn’t necessarily true of all previous Marvel projects, it was certainly something the team working on Moon Knight wanted to avoid, embracing the psychedelic atmosphere of the character’s appearances in Marvel comics.
In a recent interview with the Direct, Andrew Droz Palermo revealed that he and the other cinematographers on Moon Knight wanted to make the series stand out visually from previous Marvel films and series:
“I think for us, even just visually, we were looking to make a show which was a bit contrast-ier, to have a bit more black to it. I think historically, Marvel things before us are pretty middle-grey and pretty flat. So we tried to build on the things that other cinematographers before me had done. To tweak little things. That was kind of one of our objectives to start with.”
He also cited the comics as a key reference point in creating the look of Moon Knight:
“I mean the comic books were a real North Star for us, I feel like, in that the visual style from some of those things. Plus just the way that it could go to such psychedelic places. You know, like a lot of the mental asylum, or hospital stuff, that we ultimately get into my episode and episode five.”
Given the series’ distinctive tone and the visual contrasts that naturally arose, often between the dark night sky and Moon Knight’s stark white suit, this decision to focus on contrast and actively attempt to make the series more vibrant than other MCU projects certainly helped to elevate Moon Knight.
Here is the synopsis for Moon Knight:
The series follows Steven Grant, a mild-mannered gift-shop employee, who becomes plagued with blackouts and memories of another life. Steven discovers he has dissociative identity disorder and shares a body with mercenary Marc Spector. As Steven/Marc’s enemies converge upon them, they must navigate their complex identities while thrust into a deadly mystery among the powerful gods of Egypt.
Created by Jeremy Slater, the Disney Plus series stars Oscar Isaac, May Calamawy, Karim El Hakim, F. Murray Abraham, Ethan Hawke, Ann Akinjirin, David Ganly, Khalid Abdalla, Gaspard Ulliel, Antonia Salib, Fernanda Andrade, Rey Lucas, Sofia Danu, and Saba Mubarak.
Moon Knight is now steaming on Disney Plus. Stay tuned for all the latest news surrounding the future of the charater, and be sure to subscribe to Heroic Hollywood’s YouTube channel for more original video content.
Source: The Direct