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Review: QUEEN OF KATWE

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Entries in Costume Design (191)

Friday
Oct092015

Hail this Teaser for "Hail, Caesar!"

Hail the teaser for the new Coen Bros picture, which will launch a thousand internet memes! Since it's mostly a collection of catchy images and title credits we'll leave the full Yes No Maybe So treatment for later but know that we're "Yes" on literally every shot therein. Zany Coen Bros comedies are to be cherished when they arrive. I still remember my first times seeing both Raising Arizona (1987) and Burn After Reading (2008) in theaters and just hurting from laughter. 

5 favorite things (and boy was it hard to narrow down) in the trailer after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Friday
Sep182015

Interview: Gillian Armstrong on Her Orry-Kelly Documentary and Why the Film Industry Needs Affirmative Action 

Jose interviews the director of a new costume design documentary at TIFF 

Orry-Kelly with Kay Francis. Photo courtesy of Scotty Bowers

In Women He’s Undressed, the extraordinary Gillian Armstrong paints a delightful portrait of Australian costume designer Orry-Kelly whose bold designs changed Hollywood forever (he was the first costume designer to draw the actors' faces on his designs!). The brilliant man behind Ingrid Bergman’s tasteful suits in Casablanca, Rosalind Russell’s larger than life gowns in Auntie Mame, and Marilyn Monroe’s nude dress from Some Like It Hot (he did Jack and Tony’s dresses too) had an exciting life that had him leave his small hometown to find a career in a budding industry across the world. From gangsters and plays with an unknown Katharine Hepburn, to affairs with Cary Grant and uprisings with Bette Davis, Orry-Kelly’s life was so rich that one wonders why no one had done a film about him before.

In typical Armstrong fashion, the documentary is told with whimsical flourishes (Darren Gilshenan plays Orry who reads from letters and adds commentary) and features interviews with Colleen Armstrong, Michael Wilkinson, Jane Fonda, Catherine Martin, Angela Lansbury and the legendary Ann Roth, all of whom express their admiration for Orry, and share anecdotes about working with him. The film played at the Toronto Film Festival, and I had the opportunity to talk with Ms. Armstrong about discovering Orry’s work, working with Ann Roth (“someone should do a documentary on her next, she’s extraordinary”) and her thoughts on the way the industry treats women.

Orry-Kelly, Australian Oscar winners, and artists as film subjects after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Sep172015

1963 Look Back: Liz Taylor's 10 Best Looks From "Cleopatra"

Abstew kicks off our celebration of 1963 as we countdown to the next Smackdown (date TBA but probably early October)...

There's epic film making and then there's Cleopatra. Certainly in a class all of its own, the film spanned different countries, directors, stars, budgets, an original run time that clocked in at over six hours, and one legendary love affair far more interesting than the one being portrayed in the final film. Thanks to audiences wanting to see if La Liz and Richard Burton's explosive relationship off screen was able to be captured on the 70 mm Todd-AO celluloid, Cleopatra ended up being the #1 box office champion of 1963...and still ended up nearly bankrupting 20th Century Fox. Originally budgeted at $2 million, the final budget ballooned into an unprecedented amount of $44 million (roughly over $300 million when judged for inflation today) including a million dollar contract for star Elizabeth Taylor, making her the highest paid performer at the time. (She ended up walking away with over $7 million due to delays and a percentage of the box office.)

And it feels like at least half of that inflated budget went toward Taylor's costumes alone. Setting a Guinness Book of World Record at the time, Taylor goes through 65 costume changes in the film and earned all 3 (yes, 3) of its Costume Designers the Oscar for their efforts. Renié was responsible for the women's costumes, Vittorio Nino Novarese created the men's, and thanks to Irene Sharaff, who was in charge of all of Elizabeth Taylor's looks, we have a sumptuous treasure trove of couture fit for a queen (or at least Hollywood royalty). Deciding on a more modern look and color palette than what would have actually been found in ancient Egypt at the time of the film's setting, Taylor's looks influenced early '60s fashion with an influx in Egyptian like jewelry and even inspired a Revlon "Syphinx" line of make-up. So in honor of the film's sartorial contributions to cinema, let's take a look at 10 of Elizabeth Taylor's best looks as the legendary Queen of the Nile...

10. Travel Rug Chic

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Wednesday
Sep162015

TIFF: Kate Winslet Goes Couture in 'The Dressmaker'

Glenn here. I'm not in Toronto (booo!), but I did get to see this homegrown film recently so let's talk about The Dressmaker. This is a film that makes a lot better sense when the end credits roll and you realize that director Jocelyn Moorhouse co-wrote the screenplay with her husband, none other than P.J. Hogan. It makes sense because The Dressmaker, despite the refinement suggested by its prestige audience-courting title, is kinda crazy. It is a buoyantly excessive feat of far-fetched camp that isn’t as good as its highly-stylized cinematic cousins of the early 1990s such as Strictly Ballroom, The Adventures of Priscilla Queen of the Desert, and Hogan’s own Muriel’s Wedding, yet which nonetheless has enough of a unique voice to work as a very Australian piece of crowd-pleasuring fluff. It’s the cinematic equivalent of Betsy Johnson designing an haute couture line for Dior. [more...]

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Friday
Aug212015

1954 Look Back: Audrey's Style in "Sabrina" or the Givenchy Effect

We continue our 1954 celebration (Year of the Month) with abstew on Audrey... 

Audrey Hepburn isn't just a movie star, but a fashion icon. Her image is so closely linked to her style that the moments that immediately come to mind when we think of her - in a black cocktail dress, pearls, and oversized sunglasses nibbling a croissant in front of the window of Tiffany & Co, descending the stairs of the Louvre in a red evening gown, arms out-stretched with Winged Victory as backdrop to name just two - are all influenced by what she was wearing.

Every year some young ingénue is compared to Audrey on the red carpet. Her look and grace have become shorthand for a kind of elegance. In Jerry Maguire, when Renée Zellweger's Dorothy appears in a little black dress for her date with Tom Cruise's Jerry his adoring reaction is:

That's more than a dress. That's an Audrey Hepburn movie."

And it's thanks to the work of French designer Hubert de Givenchy and his creations on 1954's Sabrina that launched the timeless Audrey Hepburn look we know today. [More...]

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Thursday
Aug202015

Beauty Break in La La Land

Here's Murtada with pictures of some lovely people at work.

You'd let this guy take you to the movies, no? Go on. He's waiting by the box office.

I already know my most anticipated movie of 2016: La La Land . Who can resist the combo of Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling? In a musical! 

These pictures were taken this week as the stars prepared to shoot scenes in LA. We don't usually pay much attention to paparazzi shots -- outside of the red carpet because haute couture --  but let's make an exception for Emma and the Gos after the jump...

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