Categories One-By-One: Costume Design

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dws1982
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Re: Categories One-By-One: Costume Design

Postby dws1982 » Fri Feb 22, 2019 8:55 am

As expected, The Favourite and Black Panther won their respective categories at the Costume Designers Guild Awards. (Crazy Rich Asians won the award for Contemporary Film.)

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Re: Categories One-By-One: Costume Design

Postby nightwingnova » Thu Feb 21, 2019 11:37 pm

So, I was on the Black Panther bandwagon for both this category as well as Production Design. Figured that if the Academy chose Mad Max for both these categories, then Black Panther could beat a very lovely but traditional The Favourite.

Well, the Gold Derby Awards chose Mad Max for those categories but The Favourite this year. If the hipper demographics of the Gold Derby voters passed on Black Panther, I can't see how AMPAS would choose it.

Therefore, I'm predicting The Favourite for both Production and Costume Design.

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Re: Categories One-By-One: Costume Design

Postby Big Magilla » Tue Feb 19, 2019 11:16 pm

This comes down to a close race between Black Panther and The Favourite.

Black Panther has the most innovative designs, The Favourite has the most gorgeous. Gorgeous generally wins out. I think Sandy Powell will add to her collection for that.

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Re: Categories One-By-One: Costume Design

Postby dws1982 » Sun Feb 17, 2019 10:43 pm

Sabin wrote:
dws1982 wrote
It might be worth noticing if The Favourite or Black Panther don't win their respective categories, but then again, you can't read too much into that either: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them lost to a movie that wasn't even nominated for the Oscar.

True, but do you really think that Fantastic Beasts... would have won if it was up against The Favourite or Black Panther? I don't.

Oh no, it definitely wouldn't have won in most lineups. (Somehow I predicted it. Don't remember what I was thinking.) The only explanation for that win was that, well, something had to win.

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Re: Categories One-By-One: Costume Design

Postby Sabin » Sun Feb 17, 2019 10:32 pm

dws1982 wrote
It might be worth noticing if The Favourite or Black Panther don't win their respective categories, but then again, you can't read too much into that either: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them lost to a movie that wasn't even nominated for the Oscar.

True, but do you really think that Fantastic Beasts... would have won if it was up against The Favourite or Black Panther? I don't. It's easy to denigrate La La Land as a "weak contender" today but there really is no precedent for its win for Best Costume, is there? The same could be said for its production design chances as well. In retrospect, Best Cinematography, Editing, Production Design, and Costume Design were all fairly weak (or missing a traditional front-runner) in 2016.
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Re: Categories One-By-One: Costume Design

Postby Mister Tee » Sun Feb 17, 2019 8:07 pm

The Buster Scruggs nomination is not only merited on its own, it spares us a chanceless/rote mention for something like Colette. (Of course, it didn't spare us the utterly predictable Mary, Queen of Scots. You're right, dws, about Byrne: it's like everyone doing an Elizabeth movie has her on speed-dial.)

The Mary Poppins Returns costumes are certainly BRIGHT. In all honesty, there are years (say, 2016) where it might have won. But the competition, even from Sandy Powell herself, is too strong.

I come to more or less the same crossroads you guys do: all kinds of people are talking up Ruth Carter, but don't they realize how deep in the Academy wheelhouse The Favourite costumes are? I think maybe only half a dozen times in the past quarter century have costumes jumped out at me as much as The Favourite's did.

However...I feel duty-bound to note there is a truly recent precedent for a more innovative costume design winning over the merely gorgeous: Mad Max: Fury Road over Cinderella. Granted, Cinderella's was a solo nomination, where The Favourite has a sweeping ten...but solo nominees like Marie Antoinette have won the category in the past.

I'm actually having trouble with both production design and costume design regarding The Favourite and Black Panther -- I feel like they're both competing for both categories the way Blade Runner and Shape of Water did last year for cinematography and production design. In that case, there seemed a divide-the-baby decision, and I wonder if voters wouldn't like to do the same. But even if they choose to do that, the problem is deciding which way to do the division.

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Re: Categories One-By-One: Costume Design

Postby dws1982 » Sun Feb 17, 2019 7:22 pm

Worth noting, that since they now divide films between Period, Fantasy, and Contemporary, the Costume Designer's Guilds won't do anything to clear things up in this category--if you think it needs clearing up.

It might be worth noticing if The Favourite or Black Panther don't win their respective categories, but then again, you can't read too much into that either: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them lost to a movie that wasn't even nominated for the Oscar.

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Re: Categories One-By-One: Costume Design

Postby Sabin » Sun Feb 17, 2019 6:13 pm

I feel fairly confident in predicting The Favourite.
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Categories One-By-One: Costume Design

Postby dws1982 » Sun Feb 17, 2019 2:13 pm

The nominees:
The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
Black Panther
The Favourite
Mary Poppins Returns
Mary Queen of Scots


The Ballad of Buster Scruggs is a good choice, I think. I think Zophres does a great job make each set of costumes unique and appropriate to their stories but with a kind of thematic similarity all through the film: none of the costumes represent what you would call an extremely realistic view of the Old West, but they work for the version of the west that the Coens were trying to evoke. I'm not a huge fan of the movie, but I'm glad it got this nomination. That said, I don't rate it very highly as a potential winner. Westerns have been nominated a lot over the years, without any real success--voters always go for something more eye-catching.

I would also rate Mary Poppins Returns pretty low in terms of likelihood. Disney has done pretty well in the costume category, especially within the last decade, but Alice in Wonderland was the only one to actually win, and that was against a much weaker field--a foreign movie, a mega-bomb, a western without flashy costumes, and a royal drama that was more suits-and-ties than big gowns. And plus, there's kind of an air of disappointment around Mary Poppins Returns--over a period of about three weeks it went from a sure Best Actress nomination and probable Best Picture nomination to just a few below-the-line nominations.

I'm a little bit grumpy about Alexandra Byrne's nomination for Mary Queen of Scots. There's nothing wrong with working in your comfort zone, but she's gotten three nominations now (with one win) for designing variations on the same costumes. I don't rate this as much more than a ballot-filler. Her win for Elizabeth: The Golden Age came in a weird, weak category, where the main competition came from a somewhat disappointing Best Picture nominee that had one memorable green dress but was pretty subtle, subdued work otherwise. This lineup has at least two nominees that are likely to be much stronger competition than anything Byrne faced eleven years ago.

Now, Black Panther: I know a lot of people are predicting it. Ruth Carter has (somewhat unexpectedly, in my mind) been one of the "stories" to come out of Black Panther, with lots of talk about her career, and the research she did to incorporate traditional African designs in to the costumes for the Wakanda portions. Unlike pretty much all of the other nominees, she didn't have a historical time period she was trying to evoke, so her work definitely qualifies as some of the most original costumes of the year. But there is not much precedent for a film like Black Panther winning. It would be a very non-traditional winner, and those tend to emerge when the field is muddled or when there isn't a clear alternative that screams "Costumes!"

But The Favourite is very much a clear alternative. It is very much in the wheelhouse of what the Academy picks for costume awards. It's royal, it's set three-hundred years in the past, and the costumes don't have the feeling of something you've seen over and over before, the way some period films do. (Possibly because Sandy Powell used lots of anachronistic fabrics in her designs.) While I think that Black Panther could win, I think it would be very much out-of-step with what the Academy tends to go for. I'm going with The Favourite.


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