16 Movies in Which the Characters’ Costumes Had Profound Significance
When initially viewing a film or series, our primary focus lies on the storyline and the exchanges among the characters. Typically, we overlook the characters’ attire. Nevertheless, costumes can provide substantial insights into the characters and even unveil certain enigmas.
Colors exert a profound influence in the realm of cinema. Cold hues like blue and purple embellish intense sequences, whereas yellow and green bedeck moments of creativity and new beginnings. Gold undeniably symbolizes opulence and affluence.
In the film Crimson Peak, the character Edith Cushing (portrayed by Mia Wasikowska) is frequently attired in golden garments, underscoring her elevated stature within the narrative.
Murder on the Orient Express
In Murder on the Orient Express, considerable attention was devoted to Michelle Pfeiffer’s character’s attire. Evidently, each ensemble signifies either the locations she has visited or those she is about to explore.
As she departs from Turkey, she dons a dress adorned with Middle Eastern embroidery, and during her mountain sojourns, she is seen sporting her ski outfit.
Costume designer Sharon Long was very meticulous about creating the look of the great empress. She reviewed historical materials about traditional dress and sundresses, she carefully chose golden fabrics for the coronation dress in season 1.
More than that, even everything under Elle Fanning’s dress was very accurate. In season 2, the pregnancy of the empress was recreated so stunningly that it’s hard to believe it was not real.
The green dress Penelope is wearing in season 2, episode 4, was some sort of spoiler. When the character changed her traditional yellow dress for the green one, the fans thought it was a symbol of merging the color palettes of her family and the blue color usually used for Colin, her love.
Confirming the fans’ theories, costume designer Sophie Canale said that Penelope’s green dress was supposed to be a subtle hint that season 3 will be about Penelope’s and Colin’s love. Netflix also confirmed it.
One of the main tasks for Jenny Beavan was to illustrate the characters’ growth, her transformation from Estella to Cruella. The costume designer hinted at what the blue-eyed girl will become by using a tiny detail — the pins on her jacket. This attribute of punk style highlights the rebellious nature of the character.
Costume designers Deborah Lynn Scott definitely deserved her Oscar. All of them are historically accurate and help develop the characters’ stories.
The famous red dress Rose is wearing when she first meets Jack is exactly like the white dress she wears in the last scene. It was probably a way to highlight the fact that Jack’s and Rosa’s love is as pure as first snow.
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
According to costume designer Isis Mussenden, her main task was to tell a fantasy story through the costumes. She masterfully showed the character development of White Witch with her clothes. Her crown is melting and becoming smaller and smaller as her power drains. And the clothes go from snow-white to grayish, just like snow does before spring.
It turns out that writer and director of Little Women, Greta Gerwig, also shippered Jo and Laurie. She said that she made Saoirse Ronan and Timothée Chalamet swap clothes on set, to highlight the deep connection that Jo and Laurie had.
She explained, “The scene where Jo offhandedly gives him her ring, he’s wearing a yellow vest, which then she’s wearing when they’re on the hillside, and he proposes to her. There are things like that all over the movie because I just wanted them to seem like they are one and the same.”
Costume designers showed the change of leadership between 2 main characters using 1 small detail. When Cady took over Regina, she started wearing a pendant with the letter C, just like Regina did before.
The most attentive fans of the superhero noticed that the blue dress Gal Gadot’s character is wearing is a lot like the dress Lynda Carter wore in one of the episodes in the 1975 series. This was a homage to the series.
As you might know, Hela draws her power from Asgard. To highlight this fact, costume designers put a lot of work into her costume. On Earth, her clothes have a lot of holes, which symbolizes that she’s weak. But when she arrives in Asgard, her clothes become whole again and becomes green, meaning she’s restoring her power.
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
The clothes of the main villain of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix get a more darker shade of pink as she gets more and more powerful and evil. The creators of the film attracted fans’ attention to this detail, proving that it wasn’t a coincidence but a conscious choice.
Costume designers were very precise in recreating Princess Diana’s clothes in the series. They did an amazingly good job with the dress Diana wore for her wedding. The recreated the silk train, big sleeves, and bows.
“I remember watching the wedding and thinking, “Oh, that’s a very big dress,’” producer of the show, Susan Mackie said. “But there was something about seeing it on Emma.”
Fantastic Beasts: the Secrets of Dumbledore
Costume designer Colleen Atwood had to do a lot of work creating the clothes that would look natural at the beginning of the 20th century. And of course, she couldn’t neglect the fact that some of the characters are wizards. So, costume designers needed to figure out where each character kept their wands and how they reach for them.
“A lot of times it’s on the inside of the sleeve, or sometimes it’s hidden in the inside pocket of their trousers. I’ve done a couple of sheaths on the side of their pants.” Atwood says.
Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood
Jewelry play a big part in the film. For example, the celebrity status of DiCaprio’s character is highlighted by the ring with the head of a lion (it looks as if it screams,"Leo!"). And Margot Robbie’s character wears earrings that could have belonged to Sharon Tate herself. Some of the jewelry was lent to them by her sister Debra.
Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
In the 1980s, one of Steven Spielberg’s most significant aspirations was to helm a James Bond film. Evidently, the James Bond movie producers showed no interest in his proposal, despite Spielberg’s substantial stature at that time, as prominent as he remains today.
Therefore, Spielberg conceived the character of Indiana Jones, and in the film The Temple of Doom, Indiana’s attire bore a striking resemblance to that of Mr. Bond. Is this a mere coincidence? We believe not.
We understand the director’s desire to touch Bond even in this way. After all, almost all people from the movie world dream of becoming a part of this movie universe. Actresses consider it an honor to play the girlfriends of Agent 007, and actors meet to get the role of Bond at any cost. By the way, everyone who played this role, had his own vision of this hero. But every time James turned out irresistible.