5 Famous Movie Costumes (That Have Hilarious Secrets)
We've talked about the times when costume designers went to admirable lengths to put extra details into their work, like the handcrafted armor in The Lord Of The Rings. Well, let's talk about the opposite. In some cases, either because they were thinking outside the box or it was Friday at 5:30 p.m., designers have made costumes out of the most random and unglamorous objects ever. Like how ...
The Night's Watch Cloaks On Game Of Thrones Are Rugs From IKEA
Anyone who's bought anything from IKEA knows it's best to unpack stuff with several Allen wrenches and a strong drink at the ready. Since nobody's ever suggested that the chain's instructions are easy to follow, the costume designers for Game Of Thrones decided to ignore them completely and go rogue with some shearling rugs, turning them into cloaks for the brothers of the Night's Watch. That's right, Jon Snow's been running around with an IKEA rug around his shoulders like some fancy Swedish hobo.
During a talk in 2016, GOT costume designer Michele Clapton copped to buying the cloaks at IKEA and said, "We cut and we shaved them, and then we added strong leather straps and then ... I want the audience to almost smell the costumes." The rugs were also "waxed and frosted" to give them that wet, snowed-on, I-see-undead-people look.
The folks at People.com checked to see if you can still get an authentic Night's Watch fur for yourself, and you're in luck! IKEA's "TEJN" rug is available for the bargain price of $14.99, while the slightly larger "RENS" rug is $29.99. Now, the rugs only come in white, so if you're planning to use one for a costume or something, be prepared to rub it in some dirt, spill stuff on it, let your dog poop on it, and throw some dye at it before it's even close to being the right color. If that seems like too much work, an unattended toddler can probably get it looking right in a few hours.
Star Trek Made Costumes From Shower Curtains And Hair Barrettes
With the Star Trek universe being full of substances like dilithium crystals and tritanium alloys, it's logical to assume they aren't still making clothing from a cotton/poly blend. Environmental suits, for example, are probably crafted from some ultra-germ-filtering super material that protects the wearer from everything and conceals a hidden Cheeto dispenser.
While we can only imagine what sci-fi substance the suits are supposed to be made of, the reality is something of a buzzkill. You see, the costume designers for the original Star Trek series were somewhere between opportunistic cheapskates and resourceful masterminds. You know those classic orange EV suits our heroes would sometimes use to explore strange alien planets? Yeah, they were repurposed shower curtains.
This wasn't the only time in Trek history when necessity became the mother of ... stealing household items. Two decades later, the producers of Star Trek: The Next Generation were having trouble with the design of a rather iconic prop: Geordi LaForge's visor, the VISOR.
The design team spent three months working on possible designs, all of which got nixed for one reason or another. Fortunately, Trek artist Mike Okuda was watching his girlfriend put a barrette in her hair one day when he thought to himself: "Wow, wouldn't that look good over Geordi's eyes." In other words, people made lots of jokes about the VISOR looking like a 1980s "banana clip" because the VISOR was a 1980s banana clip.
The team added light-emitting diodes to represent the VISOR's "connection points" and tiny monofilament loops fit over LeVar Burton's ears to hold it in place. What did the production team think of the final product? According to Production Designer Herman Zimmerman, "I can't tell you how much money we spent in research and development on that to come up with a $0.69 barrette."
The Original Godzilla Suit Was Made Out Of Concrete
In postwar Japan, a number of things were in short supply -- like rubber, tall buildings, and pretty much anything flammable. This was a problem for production company Toho and director Ishiro Honda, who were working on a small project called Godzilla and needed a lizard suit, dammit.
With rubber too scarce to use for a costume, filmmakers looked for alternative materials with which to create the king of monsters. And so, with an appalling lack of consideration for the poor actor they were going to stuff inside it, they proceeded to craft their Godzilla suit out of something that was much easier to find: ready-to-mix concrete.
As you might have guessed, that shit was heavy. According to actor Haruo Nakajima, the suit weighed about 220 pounds -- he credited the training he received in the Navy for allowing him to walk around in that thing. Nakajima said that during breaks, he would wring the sweat out of his shirt into a jar, and he recalls that he "really stunk up the inside of that suit to an unbelievable degree." In other words, Godzilla stank. Roland Emmerich got it right after all.
Charlize Theron Wore A Dress Made Out Of Razor-Sharp Dung Beetle Shells In Snow White And The Huntsman
Quick, what's the prettiest thing you've ever seen that's been completely covered in poop? If you're a parent, that's probably one of your children. For everyone else, the correct answer is Charlize Theron's dress in Snow White And The Huntsman. Yes, really. We never joke about poop.
We're honestly not sure whether costume designer Colleen Atwood was bored or if she was actually trying to punk Theron. Either way, Atwood decided to cover one of Queen Ravena's gowns in the razor-sharp shells of dung beetles, because nothing says "regal" like little bugs whose sole purpose is to play around with turds.
Atwood said that she spied the shells while browsing a flea market in Thailand, looking for "unique materials" to use for costumes. Apparently beetle ranching is a thing in Thailand, where the poop-loving insects are farmed and used for food. Atwood was "thrilled" to discover that she could order large quantities of the discarded shells, because who wants to deal with offing a bunch of dung beetles to make a dress?
The ones who got the shit end of the stick in this scenario (other than the beetles) were the seamstresses working for Atwood. Some 50 of them were tasked with drilling holes in beetles and attaching them to the dress. Unfortunately, the shells were "treacherously" sharp to handle, so the workers were forced to wear gloves while giving substance to her beetle dreams. But hey, the dress ended up appearing onscreen for over a second, so it was all worth it in the end.
Star Wars Used Everything From An Antique Bedspread To Maybe A Deer's Anus
One of the best scenes in Star Wars: Attack Of The Clones is the completely silent wedding of Padme and Anakin, mainly because we aren't subjected to a single word of George Lucas' wooden dialogue. While what-the-hell-is-she-wearing outfits are kinda Padme's trademark, her wedding dress is downright tame in comparison, even beautiful. Of course, that's because you can't see the fact that some old-timey Italian people definitely had sex inside it.
You see, the "dress" began its life as an antique bedspread that turned up in an Italian thrift store. Costume designer Trisha Biggar was browsing the shop when she saw the piece of Edwardian bedding and thought, "Wow, someone should totally get married up in this thing." The bedspread wasn't very large, so they ended up spreading out pieces of the lace and stitching it to a background of tulle. So if your great-grandparents lived in Italy and had a lace bedspread, there's a chance their linens had a cameo in Star Wars.
Now, it's not exactly a costume, but there's one additional Star Wars prop that bears mentioning. Remember the animal Chewbacca finds baiting an Ewok trap in Return Of The Jedi? You probably didn't study it too closely, and Han dismisses it as "Just a dead animal, Chewie." Yeah, we're reasonably sure that's a dead white-tailed deer with teeth in its butthole.
Now, the filmmakers haven't confirmed this, either because they're scared of PETA or they don't want to admit they put teeth in a deer's bunghole. But more than a few people -- the type who have the time to watch Jedi multiple times and very slowly -- have scrutinized the scene and realized that the "unidentified tusked species" has to be a deer ass. Why would a multi-million-dollar production feel the need to resort to that? Did George Lucas personally select the butthole or delegate the task? What does Chewie's eagerness to get the ass imply about his sex life? We'll let you decide.
On the off chance that you're thinking about doing some costuming of your own, it's probably worth it to invest in a sewing machine. And as long as you say it's for your fandom, nobody will think it's weird!
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