The costume designer Jeffrey Kurland explained how he designed the suits that the actors are wearing in the film ‘Tenet.‘
Kurland, who previously worked as a costume designer in films such as Inception and Dunkirk, told that Tenet was a new challenge for him. He read the script many times to understand what was going on throughout the story. In the film, there are many backwards or forwards through time. In order to stay loyal to the timeline and be consistent, he used his tailoring tips and tricks.
After reading the script six times, he listened to the director of the film, Chris Nolan, and learned how he wanted to see the characters. He stated that it was a long talk because he had to learn everything about all of the characters in the film. Then, he began sketching the costumes. He showed them to the director, and he expressed his opinion. After getting into an agreement on the outlines, he started to choose fabrics, and again they decided with the director. So, as he mentions it was always a collaborative work.
Here’s what he said:
“The chat is about the script itself and the story, then we talk about the characters. Who they are mentally, physically, how he physically wants to present them. That’s a long chat about everybody.
Then I go off and I start to draw. I sketch this thing and I show them to Chris and he says to me, ‘Oh, you’re on the right track,’ or ‘No, no, no, you’re veering off, that’s not where I want to go.’ That’s the kind of dialogue we have for a long time until we settle in on the direction for each character. Then I start choosing fabrics and I bring them over to Chris and it’s always a shared decision. He’s in on all the elements.”
The tailor gave an example about one of the woman characters on set, Kat. She is played by the actor Elizabeth Debicki. She is a very tall woman. Kurland decided to turn her height into an advantage and make her wear high-heels. In the wide shots, it can be seen how tall she is because Kurland wanted her to be as who she is.
Here’s what he said:
“I started before the whole thing was cast, and [at one point] Chris said, ‘Elizabeth Debicki’s playing this role and, you know, she’s six foot three in her stocking feet.’ My suggestion was to take advantage of that. Let’s own that because she’s never gonna be shorter than anybody on screen.
So let’s bump it up and give her what she comes with. She’s so stately and she makes a statement physically, and visually, on her own. And as a designer, she’s a dream to work with.”
Click here for the full interview and the source.