The Favourite and Black Panther win top honours at Costume Designers Guild Awards

The Favourite, Black Panther and Crazy Rich Asians were the big winners at the Costume Designers Guild Awards (CDGA) on Tuesday night (19Feb19). Sandy Powell, who took home the costume design BAFTA earlier this month (Feb19), won the Excellence in Per…

The Favourite, Black Panther and Crazy Rich Asians were the big winners at the Costume Designers Guild Awards (CDGA) on Tuesday night (19Feb19).

Sandy Powell, who took home the costume design BAFTA earlier this month (Feb19), won the Excellence in Period Film prize for her work on Yorgos Lanthimos’ comedy-drama, while Black Panther designer Ruth E. Carter won the Excellence in Sci-Fi/Fantasy Film for the Oscar-nominated Marvel movie and Mary E. Vogt was presented with the Excellence in Contemporary Film accolade for Crazy Rich Asians.

Both Carter and Powell are up for the Best Costume Design Academy Award on Sunday. Powell appears in the category twice, for The Favourite and Mary Poppins Returns, while the remaining nominees include Mary Queen of Scots’ Alexandra Byrne and Mary Zophres for The Ballad of Buster Scruggs.

Carter, who has previously been Oscar-nominated for Malcolm X and Amistad, took home two prizes at the CDGA on Tuesday night, as she had already been announced as the recipient of the Career Achievement Award.

According to Deadline, Halle Berry took to the stage at the Beverly Hilton hotel in Los Angeles to heap praise on Carter, who “helped me to be the very best crack ho’ that I could be” in 1991’s Jungle Fever, her first-ever movie.

Other honorees included Oscar favourite Glenn Close, who said she was “very moved” to receive the CDGA Spotlight Award, and added, “It has been my great privilege to have stood for hundreds of hours being draped, pinned and trimmed by many of you in this room.”

Ryan Murphy was presented with the Distinguished Collaborator honorary award by his American Horror Story regular Sarah Paulson, while costume designer Betty Pecha Madden was bestowed with the Distinguished Service Award.

Other winners on the night included the teams for TV shows The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story, Westworld, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and RuPaul’s Drag Race, and Natasha Newman-Thomas, who won the Excellence in Short Form Design prize for Childish Gambino’s music video This is America.

The full list of winners is as follows:

Excellence in Period Film: The Favourite – Sandy Powell

Excellence in Contemporary Film: Crazy Rich Asians – Mary E. Vogt

Excellence in Sci-Fi/Fantasy Film: Black Panther – Ruth E. Carter

Excellence in Period Television: The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel – Donna Zakowska

Excellence in Contemporary Television: The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story – Lou Eyrich & Allison Leach

Excellence in Sci-Fi / Fantasy Television: Westworld – Sharen Davis

Excellence in Variety, Reality-Competition, Live Television: RuPaul’s Drag Race – Zaldy Goco

Excellence in Short Form Design: Childish Gambino, This is America – Natasha Newman-Thomas

Career Achievement Award: Ruth E. Carter

Spotlight Award: Glenn Close

Distinguished Service Award: Betty Pecha Madden

Distinguished Collaborator Award: Ryan Murphy

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Liam Neeson’s good looks were a challenge to work with on Buster Scruggs

Costume designer Mary Zophres was tasked with making “handsome” Liam Neeson have an air of desperation in The Ballad of Buster Scruggs.Mary is a longtime collaborator of brothers Joel and Ethan Coen, working with them on some of their most classic work…

Costume designer Mary Zophres was tasked with making “handsome” Liam Neeson have an air of desperation in The Ballad of Buster Scruggs.

Mary is a longtime collaborator of brothers Joel and Ethan Coen, working with them on some of their most classic works, including No Country for Old Men, O Brother, Where Art Thou? and True Grit.

She once again joined forces with them for their Netflix Western anthology The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, made up of six short films, where she had to create costumes for Hollywood stars like Liam, James Franco and Zoe Kazan.

“The specific characters driving Meal Ticket, for instance… there were certain stories where we did know the actor that was attached, so I knew that Liam Neeson was going to be playing that character (of Impresario),” she began to explain to Deadline.

“Liam Neeson is rather handsome and confident, and cuts a beautiful figure, right? So, you can start to imagine: What do you do to make him have that desperation in the character?”

After reading the script, which the Coen Brothers warned might not get the green light, Mary says she thought the same, as some of the stories were so dark and bleak, especially Meal Ticket, where Harry Potter star Harry Melling plays a spoken word artist with no arms or legs, opposite Liam’s ruthless Impresario.

However, she jumped at the chance to work on the feature, which has gone on to land three Oscar nods, including in the Best Costume category.

“Immediately, I thought it was a really interesting design project,” she smiled.

“You’re given the CliffsNotes, hints as to what they want it to look like, but then we could explore it in each of our departments, and manifest what we interpreted. Obviously, we bounced those ideas off of Joel and Ethan, and then it becomes the language of the film as a whole, which is such a fun process.”

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Costume designer Mary Zophres: ‘Damien Chazelle is there whenever you need him’

Director Damien Chazelle collaborates closely with the wardrobe department on his films.Costume designer Mary Zophres has worked with Chazelle twice now; first on his Oscar-winning spectacular La La Land, and then again on new film First Man.And while …

Director Damien Chazelle collaborates closely with the wardrobe department on his films.

Costume designer Mary Zophres has worked with Chazelle twice now; first on his Oscar-winning spectacular La La Land, and then again on new film First Man.

And while the two films dealt with totally different stories, Chazelle’s style remained the same.

“It was very much like La La Land. It was just a different subject matter, but his approach is very much the same,” Zophres said at the Gold Derby Meet the Experts: Costume Designers panel. “He knows exactly what the film is going to look like. He’s very much a collaborator and is very open to ideas and to meetings and discussions and meetings and show and tells. He’ll be there whenever you need him to be there.”

Zophres herself landed an Academy Award nod for 2016’s La La Land, and she was also nominated for True Grit in 2011.

Her other credits include Catch Me If You Can, Fargo and Gangster Squad, among many others.

In First Man, which stars Ryan Gosling as space hero Neil Armstrong and Claire Foy as his wife Janet, Zophres opted for a lot of natural fibres.

“Cottons and wools,” she explained. “And to be able to pull back some of the colour so it would have the effect of a Kodachrome photograph. That’s how we wanted it to look. And I knew we were going to shoot on 16 mm. Some of it’s 16, some of it’s 35 and some of its IMAX. You don’t know what it’s going to look like. That was a little intense and intimidating, but in the end, it really makes the movie make a lot of sense story-wise to me.”

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