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July 25 2014

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8 posts tagged "Baz Luhrmann"

Luhrmann Gets Grilled on Gatsby

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“I wanted the audience to feel like the people who read Gatsby in the twenties,” said director Baz Luhrmann during yesterday’s intimate luncheon and discussion of The Great Gatsby at the New York Public Library. “Back then, it was dangerous and of the moment.” Following a string of stylish events and a splashy New York premiere worthy of any Fitzgerald novel, the event was a scholarly affair hosted by Anna Wintour, NYPL President Tony Marx, and editor in chief of The New Yorker, David Remnick. The latter moderated a Q&A with the film’s star-studded cast and crew.

Just steps from the library’s trove of Fitzgerald first editions, the film’s stars, Tobey Maguire, Joel Edgerton, Isla Fisher, and Carey Mulligan (DiCaprio was absent), offered insight into playing some of literature’s most memorable characters. “Daisy became a cocktail of a lot of research,” revealed Mulligan, who plumbed Princeton’s archives for the author’s intimate correspondence with muses Zelda Fitzgerald and Ginevra King. “I fell in love with these two women. The more I read their words, the more real Daisy became.” Fisher, who plays the down-on-her-luck Myrtle Wilson, admitted that her character’s capricious tendencies were hardly far-fetched. “I often play a floozy,” the Australian starlet deadpanned in a Chloé ensemble.

But perhaps the keenest observation came from the film’s scorer, Jay-Z, who was the first to see a rough cut. “We went to lunch afterward, and Jay told me, ‘The thing about this movie is that it’s aspirational,’” recalled Luhrmann. “I think he really nailed it. With Gatsby, everybody thinks of the parties, the fashion, and the champagne. I do hope the movie has a lot of razzle-dazzle, but ultimately it’s a book about hope.”

Photo: Courtesy photo

From the Top: Milliner Rosie Boylan on the hats of Gatsby

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“Hats are always important. Full stop,” said costume designer Catherine Martin when asked about the elaborate chapeaux featured in Baz Lurhmann’s The Great Gatsby. “I think that one of the things that defines the period is evening headwear. Hats enhance the characters, create an otherworldliness, and help the audience understand that we’re in a time other than our own.” In order to fully realize Gatsby‘s sartorial Jazz Age fantasy, Martin enlisted Sydney-based milliner Rosie Boylan to create cloches, boaters, and beyond for Daisy and co. Boylan, who has worked with Martin and Lurhmann since making headpieces for Moulin Rouge in 2000, has been crafting hats for over thirty years. Here, she talks to Style.com about designing for Gatsby, pushing historical boundaries, and how to pull off a twenties topper.

Can you give us an idea of the range of hats we’ll see in The Great Gatsby?
There are about one thousand hats in the movie. Baz and Catherine love hats. For the men, there are a lot of boaters and caps and homburgs, which were a high-crowned men’s felt hat that was introduced by Prince Edward in the twenties. But we were primarily making women’s headwear. And that was mainly cloches and then the explosive party headwear that reflects the spirit of the Gatsby story. There were about 250 party headpieces, and we styled them to compliment each individual actor’s face. Every headpiece was made for a particular person.

How do the hats in Gatsby help improve our understanding of the characters?
When Catherine and I are working, it’s not only about making a period fashion statement. It’s about the character. I need to know what is happening and what they’re feeling and that helps me to create something that speaks to the storyline, the character, and the mood at that particular moment. Take Daisy, for example. She is always dressed in pale colors and she wears lots of soft floaty garments. Her headwear is very refined, highly crafted, very expensive, but always reflective of the fact that she is a delicate flower. I love the hat Carey Mulligan wears at the end of the film when she’s leaving town. She’s with Tom at the train station, it’s almost fall, and she’s got her felt hat on. It’s quite restrained but very beautiful and there’s lot of, I suppose, sadness. Continue Reading “From the Top: Milliner Rosie Boylan on the hats of Gatsby” »

Catherine Martin Talks Gatsby

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“We needed to find a way of translating the twenties into something that felt as new and modern and titillating as it was back in 1922,” said Catherine Martin—the designer behind the costumes for husband Baz Luhrmann’s upcoming The Great Gatsby film—during an intimate Q&A with Harold Koda at the Met yesterday evening. If there’s anything that can reignite the Jazz Age’s mystique, it’s Martin’s wares, which are at once painstakingly historically accurate (aside from a zipper here and there) and completely enchanting. The film, which opens on May 10 and stars Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby, Tobey Maguire as Nick Carraway, and Carey Mulligan as Daisy Buchanan, boasts such fantasies as feathered frocks worn by the Fitzgerald-penned tale’s “girls in twin yellow dresses” (the looks were inspired by an actual twenties-era vaudevillian act), hordes of boater hats by Rosie Boylan, wigs made in England, and beach pajamas (for the elusive Jordan Baker).

Luhrmann and Martin’s fondness for Schiaparelli (the pair worked on the film for the Met’s Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations exhibition), lent a surreal edge to the story’s infamous party scene. “Baz kept saying, ‘We need a lobster!’” recalled Martin. And he got one—the costumer crafted metallic crustacean headpieces for the showgirls at Gatsby’s raucous soiree (below). Continue Reading “Catherine Martin Talks Gatsby” »

Great Gatsby Will Open Cannes Film Fest

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Baz Luhrmann’s long-awaited adaptation of The Great Gatsby, with Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan, and Tobey Maguire, will open the 66th Cannes Film Festival, it was confirmed today. It’s a spiritual return to the area for Fitzgerald, who wrote some of his greatest work on the Riviera, and an actual one for Luhrmann, whose first film, Strictly Ballroom, screened at the Festival some 21 years ago. (His Moulin Rouge! opened Cannes, too.) Expect Prada on the red carpet—not only is Mulligan a favorite of the house, Miuccia Prada also worked with the costume designer, Catherine Martin, on some of the film’s looks.

Photo: Courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures—© 2012 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.

Losing The Lyrics, Keeping The (Roxy) Music

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Just like they always said, the child is father to the man. Bryan Ferry remembers listening to Louis Armstrong in the family living room way back when he was nine years old in a mining town in the North of England. Now, after a four-decade career that helped stretch rock music into elegantly radical new shapes, Ferry has returned to the sound of Satchmo for his new album The Jazz Age. Under the rubric of The Bryan Ferry Orchestra, the singer revisits a lucky 13 of his own golden oldies from both Roxy Music and his solo releases without—shock!—one solitary lick of his inimitable vocalizing.

At the launch party hosted by The Vinyl Factory and Johnnie Walker Blue at Annabel’s the other night, Ferry insisted it was all about spotlighting, once and for all, the melodies he’s written over the years. Ardent fans might blanch at the prospect. How, for example, can you possibly divorce a song such as “Just Like You” from a lyric which is as worthy of adoration as the finest love poem ever penned by John Donne? Maybe that’s why, during dinner, Ferry weakened and sang a couple of numbers with his orchestra. But otherwise, listeners were treated to ragtime-, big-band-, or twenties-tango-inflected versions of classics like “Do the Strand,” “Virginia Plain,” and “Slave to Love.” (Click below for the party video, debuting exclusively here on Style.com.)

Too bad Baz Luhrmann has apparently gone all Kanye and Gaga for his Gatsby soundtrack, because Ferry’s revisionist approach to his old material sounded like an ideal aural backdrop for the world that F. Scott Fitzgerald created. Maybe too literal for Baz, but Ferry’s original self-invention was quite the match of Jay Gatsby’s, and the guest list at Annabel’s reflected his usual wide-ranging retinue of artists, aristos, fashionettes, pretty young things, and money old and new. The Roxy Woman defined glamour for a few generations. Bryan’s wife, Amanda, gloriously embodied the tradition (and the evening’s theme) in her Gucci flapper dress. But as far as Ferry’s legendary sartorialism went, filmmaker Baillie Walsh was giving him a run for his money. Tom Ford made dozens of suits for 007, Daniel Craig is one of Walsh’s best friends, they’re the same size…now, who in their right manly mind wouldn’t play swapsies with James Bond? Continue Reading “Losing The Lyrics, Keeping The (Roxy) Music” »