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Summit High School Graduate Designed Movie Nominated for 4 Oscars

Alex DiGerlando, who graduated from SHS in 1996, was the production designer for the movie, "Beasts of the Southern Wild."

For the folks in Summit who know him, it may be no surprise that Alex DiGerlando helped make an Oscar-nominated movie.

"Alex always wanted to be in film and clearly followed his dream with great success," Summit resident BJ Coghan, a former neighbor, told Patch. 

DiGerlando was the production designer on the film "Beasts of the Southern Wild," which is up for four Academy Awards, including the coveted Best Picture and Best Director awards. The film has already won the Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize and the Camera d'Or, or Golden Camera prize, at the Cannes Film Festival.

With "Beasts," DiGerlando had to work with a team to create a fictional flooded Louisiana village, called the Bathtub.

He told Variety.com what went into creating the world of the film:

"The challenge and thrill was designing a fantastical and 100 percent fictional place completely on location," he says. "We built elaborate sets but there wasn't a single shot filmed on a soundstage. We exhaustively searched for locations that could portray the Bathtub in its original, flooded and wrecked states and then reverse-engineered our sets to connect the dots."

DiGerlando has been an in-demand Brooklyn-based production designer for several years. He's a 1996 graduate of Summit High School and a 2000 graduate of New York University's Tisch film school.

The Academy Awards ceremony is scheduled for Feb. 24 at the Dolby Theatre at the Hollywood & Highland Center. It will be televised live domestically on ABC and in more than 225 foreign countries.

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