Dean Tavoularis (born December 12, 1942) is an American film production designer and art director. He is best known for his work on the classic films of Francis Ford Coppola, including The Godfather trilogy, Apocalypse Now, and The Conversation.
Tavoularis was born in Oakland, California, and attended the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland. After graduating in 1965, he began working in film production as a set designer. He first worked on the classic 1967 crime drama Bonnie and Clyde, directed by Arthur Penn.
In 1969, Tavoularis joined the production team of Francis Ford Coppola’s The Godfather. He designed the sets for all three films in the series, and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Art Direction for The Godfather Part II. He also worked on Coppola’s other films, including The Conversation, Apocalypse Now, and One from the Heart.
Tavoularis’s other notable film credits include the comedy classic Animal House, directed by John Landis; the science fiction classic Blade Runner, directed by Ridley Scott; and the drama The Cotton Club, directed by Coppola. He also collaborated with director Martin Scorsese on the films The Last Temptation of Christ and Kundun.
In addition to his work in film, Tavoularis also designed the sets for several television programs, including the miniseries The Winds of War and the sitcom Taxi.
Tavoularis has been nominated for five Academy Awards, winning one for Best Art Direction for The Godfather Part II. He has also won two Emmy Awards for his work on The Winds of War and Taxi, and a BAFTA Award for Best Production Design for The Conversation.
Throughout his career, Tavoularis has been honored for his work by numerous film organizations, including the Art Directors Guild, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and the American Society of Cinematographers.
Tavoularis has been married to the actress and playwright Pamela Blake since 1972. They have two children.