At the age of thirteen, Adam came to Britain, and stayed. He was later educated as an architect at London University and the Bartlett School of Architecture, and he served in the RAF during the war.
In 1947 he entered the British picture business, doing set drawings for This Was a Woman. Thereafter, he rose steadily as an assistant art director on The Queen of Spades (Thorold Dickinson); The Hidden Room ( Edward Dmytryk); Your Witness (Robert Montgomery); Captain Horatio Horn- blower (Raoul Walsh); The Crimson Pirate (Robert Siodmak); Helen of Troy (Robert Wise); he did uncredited work on Around the World in 80 Days (Michael Anderson), and assistant work on Ben-Hur (William Wyler).
Clearly, he was adept at getting hired by American directors, or on Hollvwood productions, yet he did not seem overly interested in going to Hollywood. Indeed, he built a career as art director and then production designer in Britain, and he would be vitally associated with the design look and the huge, hi-tech interiors of the James Bond films: Soho Incident (Vernon Sewell); Night of the Demon (Jacques Tourneur); The Angry Hills (Robert Aldrich); The Rough and the Smooth (Siodmak); The Trials of Oscar Wilde (Ken Hughes); Dr. No (Terence Young); Sodom and Gomorrah (Aldrich); Dr. Strangelove (Stanley Kubrick); Woman of Straw (Basil Dearden); Goldfinger (GuyHamilton); The Ipcress File (Sidney J. Furie); Thunderball (Young); Funeral in Berlin (Hamilton); You Only Live Twice (Lewis Gilbert); Chitty Chitty Bang Bang ( Hughes); Goodbye, Mr Chips (Herbert Ross); to America for The Owl and the Pussycat (boss).
He started to work increasingly in America, while keeping his British attachment to Bond and Kubrick: Diamonds Are Forever (Hamilton); Sleuth ( Joseph L. Manldewicz); The Last of Sheila (Ross); winning an Oscar for Barry Lyndon (Kubrick); Madam Kitty (Tinto Brass); The Seven-PerCent Solution (Ross); The Spy Who Loved Me (Gilbert); Moonraker (Gilbert).
Ill ness caused a significant gap in his work in the early eighties, at which time his only credit was as design consultant on Pennies from Ilcaven (SI, Ross). Since his return, he had been based in America and Rond-less. He also seemed to work on more modest projects, while staying loyal to Herb Ross: King David (Bruce Beresford); Crimes of the Heart (Beresford); The Deceivers (Nicholas Meyer); Dead Bang (John Franken- heimer); The Freshman (Andrew Bergman); The Doctor (Randa Haines); Undercover Blues (Ross); Addams Family Values ( Barry Sonnenfeld); then back to Britain, with another Oscar, on The Madness of King George (Nicholas Hytner); Boys on the Side (Ross); Bogus (Norman Jewison); In 6- Out (Frank Oz); The Out-of-Towners (Sam Weisman).
Served in Royal Air Force in W.W.II. Started career as jr. draughtsman on a film set. Designer of about 60 films, including Around the World in Eighty Days, seven James Bond films, Dr Strangelove, Sleuth, Barry Lyndon (Academy).