Friday, March 5, 2010

Wonder-ous Costumes in 3D - Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland

Opening today is Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland. The dark prince of Hollywood unleashes another gorgeous film on the screen in eye-popping 3D. One of his most important partners in achieving his style is Colleen Atwood, costume designer extraordinaire. She is the talent behind the looks of Sweeney Todd, Sleepy Hollow, Batman Returns and many of my other favorite films . For Alice in Wonderland, she wanted to stay far away from the cliche "Alice-in-a-bag" costumes you see at Halloween (many based on Disney's original animated version). Instead, her team took inspiration from authentic illustrations by John Tenniel and Lewis Carroll from original 1865 editions of the books.

As reality wasn't a priority, Ms. Atwood designed Anne Hathaway's look as frothy, Victorian "Stepford Fairy Princess". For Helena Bonham Carter's red queen, the designer outfitted her in a stiff, exaggerated Elizabethan collar to create a frame for the oversized head. The actress then was fitted with a prosthetic forehead and a 3 lb heart-shaped wig.  Digital effects did the rest.

For Johnny Depp’s Mad Hatter, Colleen Atwood created his look as a blend of Edwardian hat maker (the ones who actually did go mad from mercury poisoning) and a watercolor illustration created by Depp and Burton himself.

Go see the movie, or check out many of Ms. Atwood’s costumes and sketches in person at the Tim Burton retrospective at the MOMA.

1 comment:

verobirdie said...

Thanks for this post. I saw the trailer of Alice and want to go see it. Even more now.


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