Watson Design Group Turns Films Into Rich Interactive Online Experiences

Boutique uses creativity, collaboration and gut instincts to create websites

Specs

Who Jordan Cuddy, vp, production; Fernando Ramirez, founder and chief creative director; hleb marholin, creative director

What Digital creative shop

Where Los Angeles

In 2004, Watson Design Group chief creative director Fernando Ramirez quit his job over his former employer's decision to modify the light blue color he had chosen for the website promoting the film Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Luckily, his youthful hubris was simply a life lesson. Today, Hollywood studios and talent are clamoring for the boutique firm to build their online experiences—among them, Fox Searchlight's Birdman and Lionsgate's Hunger Games franchise. Director Wes Anderson has personally enlisted Watson to conceive whimsical designs for his movies' sites. (Watson/DG last month won a Grand Key Art Award for Anderson's Grand Budapest Hotel from The Hollywood Reporter and Clio.) As Ramirez put it, "If you engage a website user in a way that they feel like they are part of the [film's] universe, they are more likely to buy a ticket than a person who sees the surface side of it."