Friday, May 7, 2021

Anthony Powell, Oscar-winning costume designer, dies at 85

Anthony Powell, An inventive British costume designer who won three Oscars, but is perhaps best known for the clothes he envisioned for Glenn Close, as the fur-loving Cruella de Vil in “101 Dalmatians” and its sequel , Died in London on 16 April. He was 85.

The Costume Designers Guild announced his death, but did not explain the cause. His fellow costume designer Tom Rand said he died in a nursing home.

Keith Lodwick, curator of theater and screen art at the V&A Museum in London, said, “There’s a lot of intelligence behind his work, no matter what.” You watch a film like ‘Evil Under the Sun’ and you see extraordinary details – As in one scene, Roddy McDowall’s red socks match the red carnations on his jacket. “

Mr. Powell, who did extensive research for his work in both theater and film, won the Tony Award in 1963 for his first Broadway show of Richard Brinsley Sheridan’s 18th-century Manners “The School for Scandal.” He collaborated in films with Steven Spielberg and Roman Polanski. He won his Oscars for “Travels with My Aunt” (1972) directed by George Kakor; “Death on the Nile” (1978), directed by John Guillermin; And “Tess” (1979), the first of his three films with Mr. Polanski.

“Anthony is, in a way, a wonderful director,” Kevin Lima, who directed the sequel “102 Dalmatian” (2000), told The Los Angeles Times, “because he got to see these characters in depth and imagine them . And he doesn’t understand what they wear, but also who they are and how they create layers of character based on their clothes, which we did with Cruella. “

For Cruella de Vil, in two live-action films based on the 1961 animated feature, Mr. Powell conceived wild, villain-raising imagery. She included a black and white silk gown with shark-fin; A red gown Ostrich lined with feathers Who appeared to be swallowing Ms. Bandh in the flames; And a nutty nun with a backless gown and the shape of an umbrella.

“When we started, Glenn spoke to me the most quickly,” Mr. Powell was quoted as saying in The Telegraph. “She said to me, ‘Just do the clothes, the makeup and the hair, then I’ll look in the mirror and decide how I’m going to do it.” It is a lot of responsibility. “

Ms. Band, who will also wear the outfit (including a turban) designed by Mr. Powell for the Broadway musical “Sunset Bowl” – both original production, in 1994, for which he received a Tony nomination, and a 2017 revival – his death. Twitter said, “They put me in outfits that taught me how to use it and wear it instead of wearing it.”

Mr. Powell received an Oscar nomination for his work “102 Dalmatians.”

Mr. Powell was born on June 2, 1935 in Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Arthur and Alice (Woodhead) Powell, a suburb of Manchester. He attended schools in Manchester and Dublin before serving as a wireless operator in the British Army.

After graduating from the Central School of Arts and Crafts in London, he worked with Cecil Beaton, the Oscar-winning stage and costume designer, and Beautiful and costume designer Oliver Mesel.

While teaching at the Kendriya Vidyalaya, Mr. Powell started his career. Mr. Beaton introduced him to John Gilgad, who was directing and acting in the 1962 London production of “The Scandal for the Scandal”.

In addition to winning Tony for his costume design for that show, Mr. Powell was nominated for Best Natural Design.

Mr. Powell occasionally returned to the stage in London and Broadway. But most of his work was on film, with Irving Lerner’s “The Royal Hunt of the Sun” in 1969, a historical drama about a Spanish conqueror battling Incas in the 16th century.

With Franklin Scheffner’s “Papillon” (1973), a tale of prisoners on Devils Island in French Guiana, Mr. Powell outfits Dustin Hoffman in small round glasses and ways to distinguish his appearance from other prisoners in uniform Find Played by Steve McQueen.

In an interview with the British Film Institute in 2016, Mr. Powell said, “I had to make them as weird as possible.” , And changing proportionally to give him a completely different physical appearance. “

The three films for which Mr. Powell won an Oscar were Period Peace.

In the 1937 cast of “Death on the Nile”, an Agatha Christie novel and set in Egypt, Bette Davis was with whom she met at the beginning of the process at her home.

“They had a gin and tonic, or something else, and he said, ‘Let’s go upstairs, you need to see what you’re working on,” Mr. Rand said. “She took off her clothes and stood there in her bra and panties.”

“They said she had beautiful skin,” he said.

For “Tess”, a adaptation of Thomas Hardy’s novel “Tess of the D’Arberilles”, Mr. Powell dressed the actors in Victorian attire, including Nastassja Kinski. On the blog The Film Experience, Claudio Alves wrote It was after Mr. Powell’s death that he paid “remarkable attention to detail, nifty tailoring, a keen eye for finding beauty in the rustic simplicity of the English countryside.”

Mr. Powell continued his collaboration with Mr. Polansky through a stage production of “Pirates” (1986) and “Manic” (1988) and “Amadeus” in Paris in which the director played Mozart.

In 1984, Mr. Powell designed costumes for “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom”, Mr. Spielberg’s prequel “The Lost Ark”. He then added Harrison Ford in the title role with Sean Connery as his father in 1989, “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade”.

Deborah Nadoolman Landis, who designed the costumes for “Raiders”, said that when she first met Mr. Powell, she expressed her gratitude for creating a costume template for the Jones franchise.

He said, “When he introduced me, he looked at me and said, ‘Thank you.” Dr. Landis, David C. at UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television. Presided by the Kopley Center for Costume Design. “How could I not marry that man?”

For “Last Crusade”, Mr. Powell dressed Mr. Connery in a three-piece Harris tweed suit, bow tie and hat – a look he had based on his grandfather – to provide Mr. Ford’s leather jacket and counterpoint to Fedora . When filming was transferred from Venice to Petra, Mr. Powell admitted he had a problem.

“Sean has one thing about the heat, and he sweats like a pig,” Mr. Powell said in a BFI interview. He said: “Sean said, ‘There is no way to wear this Harris in Petra.’ So what we had to do was get a tweed-length picture of Harris, then screen-print it in a thin cotton swab. It cost a king’s ransom! “

Mr. Powell’s other film credits included Mr. Spielberg’s wig of “Hook” (the story of Peter Pan, with Mr. Hoffman as Captain Hook. King Charles II of Britain) and “Miss Potter” starring Renee Zellweger as Beatrix Matrix, author of the children’s book “The Tale of Peter Rabbit”.

No family members are alive.

During the filming of “Death on the Nile”, a new scene was written, requiring a new costume for Mia Farrow. Mr. Powell had enough silk to make pajama pants, but nothing to make from above. As he wandered around, he encountered his tailor’s mother cooking the paella and using a striped linen, which was covered in oil, garlic and olive oil.

“I felt that in an interview with Mr. Lodwick of the V&A Museum in 2018, Mr. Powell said,” It would be enough to create a little waistcoat. “Means to be, and we whispered this very beautiful waistcoat.

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