Sure, he could have done the Ark as a special effect, building bits and pieces and marrying them together with digital technology. Or he could have done the entire thing in the carefully controlled environment of a soundstage, and that would have been easy. But instead, Aronofsky and his crew built a practical environment on location, and then they shot in some truly crazy weather.
To celebrate the digital release of "Noah" today, Paramount sent over an exclusive behind-the-scenes clip, and I am a big fan of getting to hear Matthew Libatique talk about the process of working with Aronofsky on this film. On any film, to be frank. I think these guys have one of the most exciting partnerships in modern movies, and in film after film, it feels like Aronofsky pushes Libatique and vice-versa. They never seem to rest on things they've already done, and it makes it thrilling to watch them work.
One of the things this clip clearly illustrates is just how dedicated Aronofsky is once he's started production. He takes a long time to pull the trigger on a project, it seems sometimes, but once he's shooting, he is like a man possessed. I've been on one of his sets, and he's really joyous about the actual act of creation. This is a guy who knows what an amazing opportunity it is every single time he gets to tell a story on film, and "Noah" is something he's wanted to do most of his life.
You can look back at my review for the film, or my chat with Aronofsky, or you can just pick it up today via your favorite digital platform and see for yourself.