The work of a Hendersonville photographer has caught the eye of one of Hollywood’s top directors. Need a hint? Think Opie.
Oscar-winning director Ron Howard has picked an image by Walter Arnold for his new venture called Project Imagin8tion. Howard’s unique photo contest will use Arnold’s picture of an abandoned airplane cockpit to inspire the setting for a short film the director and his daughter, Bryce Dallas Howard, are shooting together.
Arnold is one of seven photographers whose images will shape the film. The other winning entries will inspire the film’s time, character, mood, relationship, goal, obstacle, and the unknown.
A YouTube video shows Howard announcing Arnold’s winning entry, called The Final View. The director says of Arnold’s eerie shot, “I know we will be able to use Walter’s image, this setting, to inspire an interesting twist or turn in the story that we’re going to build around these eight images that we’ve selected.”
Arnold, who often uses his camera to find the beauty in abandoned or neglected objects, says he’s still in shock that he won. After entering the contest in June, he got word in early July that Howard had decided upon his image.
“I got a call from the PR agency on my lunch break telling me that Ron Howard had picked my image,” he says. “I was just blown away. I literally blacked out for a while and don’t remember anything about the first part of the conservation.”
When the film premieres around November in New York City, Arnold will be there hob-nobbing with Howard, walking down the red carpet, and living it up at the after-party.
“My fiancee’s never been to New York City. This will be her first time, and she gets to walk down the red carpet,” he says.
To view Howard’s YouTube video discussing Arnold’s winning image, visit www.youtube.com/watch?v=r4YxbDwidJA