Wes Anderson’s films are known for their distinctive visual style, and “Asteroid City” is no exception. Set in a small American desert town in the 1950s, this Sci-Fi romantic comedy captivates audiences with its vibrant and enchanting world. One aspect that truly stands out in the movie is the brilliant costume design, which brings the performances and art direction to life. In this article, we delve into the captivating fashion choices and outfits that transport us back to the nostalgic era of the 1950s.
Costume Design by Milena Canonero
To make each character special, Anderson needed great clothes and hired the brilliant costume designer Milena Canonero. Her impressive work in many films is well-known, and once again, she showcased her brilliance. In Asteroid City, she made every character shine under the blazing desert sun.
Starting with a meticulous script reading, Canonero dives into understanding the characters and their journey. She gathers inspiration from a range of sources, such as the film’s sets, locations, photographs, paintings, and Wes Anderson’s guidance.
Canonero’s costumes in Asteroid City embody a ready-to-wear fashion line that could sell out overnight. She carefully curates a evolving color palette, working closely with the cinematographer and production designer to ensure a cohesive visual narrative.
As in all of Wes’ works, there is a feeling of melancholy and depth not always evident. And also hope and love.designer Milena Canonero
The Quintessential 1950s Fashion
Scarlett Johansson’s character, a glamorous movie star within the film, epitomizes the timeless allure of the 1950s fashion silhouette. Her dress emanates an exquisite elegance, boasting a gracefully draped fabric, a self-belt that accentuates the waist, and a flared skirt that adds a touch of flair. Completing the ensemble are the pearls that lend a classic charm. However, what truly captures the essence of the movie’s setting, Asteroid City, are the hand-painted cactus flowers delicately adorning the dress. Wes Anderson’s meticulous attention to detail shines brilliantly in these intricate and specific costume elements.
The Military Precision
As the characters make their way to Asteroid City for the junior stargazers convention, we meet the captivating General Gibson, brought to life by a talented actor. His military attire captures the timeless charm of 1950s military aesthetics, complete with stars, lapels, and striking red trim. Each meticulously crafted element, from the custom patches to the carefully designed pins, contributes to the authenticity of the character and enhances the overall visual narrative of the film.
Classic 1950s Silhouettes
Hope Davis delivers a captivating performance as one of the central characters in the film, portraying the mother of a young star gazer. Her costume beautifully captures the iconic silhouettes of the 1950s, featuring a mid-calf length skirt and a perfectly fitted shirt. The understated plaid pattern lovingly nods to the fashion trends of that era. Moreover, the earthy desert tones harmoniously blend with the movie’s setting, effortlessly blending into the surrounding environment
Inspired Desert Tones
Although not directly related to General Gibson, Hope Davis’s character shows subtle connections in costume design. The desert-inspired color palette and tone of her outfit complement the military attire worn by General Gibson. This attention to detail highlights the collaborative efforts of the costume designer and production designer, who ensured that every aspect of the film’s visual appeal was cohesive and intentional.
The Leading Man’s Safari Style
Jason Schwartzman plays the role of Auggie, a war photographer, and his costume remains consistent throughout the movie. His desert-toned outfit, featuring safari details and khaki fabric, exudes an air of coolness.
While each individual item may seem basic, the ensemble comes together to create an iconic leading man look. The character’s jacket, with its weathered appearance, further reinforces the image of a seasoned war photographer.
Fashion and Storytelling
The costumes in Asteroid City play a significant role in storytelling, enhancing each character’s personality and conveying their role in the film. Conrad Earp’s jacket, adorned with cowboy illustrations, showcases his wild and adventurous spirit. Scarlett Johansson and Tom Hanks, two of the film’s notable stars, are dressed in stunning outfits that reflect their characters’ depth and charisma.
Milena Canonero’s attention to detail is evident in every stitch and pattern. She even collaborates with textile artists to hand-paint original patterns, further adding uniqueness and charm to the costumes. The costumes not only transport the audience to the 1950s but also offer a glimpse into the characters’ lives and the world they inhabit.
Captivating Asteroid City’ Costumes
In Wes Anderson’s “Asteroid City,” the costumes play a vital role in creating an immersive experience for viewers. The fashion choices reflect the essence of the 1950s, with classic silhouettes, pastel color palettes, and meticulous attention to detail.
Watch the official video for Asteroid City costume design here:
The collaboration between the costume designer and the production team ensures that every outfit not only enhances the characters but also adds depth to the film’s overall visual narrative. As with so many of Anderson’s projects, everything needed to be perfectly planned. The fully built shed-like cabins of Asteroid City’s motel reflect the attention to detail in capturing 50’s interiors. and contributing to the unique Wes Anderson twist.
As we immerse ourselves in this quirky and enchanting world, the costumes in “Asteroid City” stand out as a testament to the artistry and creativity behind Wes Anderson’s filmmaking. For fashion enthusiasts and cinephiles alike, Asteroid City is a must-see film that showcases the seamless integration of fashion and storytelling.
For all Wes Anderson fans, here’s an intriguing mug adorned with the iconic zebra motif from ‘The Royal Tenenbaums: