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Interview: My So-Called Life Pilot Production Designer Tom Walsh

Over the last week I’ve been heavily immersed in laying out the creation of the My So-Called Life pilot, so imagine my delight when I was able to chat with production designer Tom Walsh on Sunday.

This came on the heels of another bit of Walshian generosity – his providing me with the shooting addresses for the individual scenes! Some, like the exterior of the Chase house, have been hunted down by eagle-eyed fans over the years, but there were still a few that I don’t think have been revealed anywhere before.

Intriguingly, one of them was referred to as “Tino’s backyard” in his paperwork. We might not have ever seen Tino but apparently we got an eyeful of his lawn. (I checked with pilot director Scott Winant, who clarified: "Since in the pilot script whenever Rayanne and Rickie mention something happening that couldn't be missed, Tino was always the source of that information. The location manager probably labeled the location Tino’s Backyard because he was supposed to be there.")

Having spent a lifetime crafting the environments of a number of film and television projects over the years (including Desperate Housewives and Longmire), Tom also shared with me some insights about why some of those locations were chosen, and how they finessed them to better support the characters and storytelling on My So-Called Life.

Finally, he shared an intriguing memory about one of the real-life inspirations for Angela. (Yep, you’ll have to wait for the book on that one.)

Thanks for sharing a bit of your Sunday with me, Tom!

So Beautiful it Hurts’ is neither endorsed by nor affiliated with ABC, The Bedford Falls Co.,or anyone involved with the making or distribution of “My So-Called Life.”


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