Director Mike Newell’s exciting new adaptation of Charles Dickens’ classic novel ‘Great Expectations’ has been awarded the prestigious honour of closing the British Film Institute’s 2012 London Film Festival. Tina and Michael both worked on the film, Michael as head cutter and Tina as textile designer.
Working closely with Costume Designer Beatrix Pasztor, they endeavored to help realize Mike Newell’s new twist on the classic by introducing a sexier take on the original. Here they present some of their ideas and their experiences working on the Film. Also included are images of the costumes that show a 'behind the scenes' glimpse of some of the challenges.
Estella’s character in Mike Newell’s film shows a little more vulnerability than in previous incarnations of Dickens’ story. Holliday Grainger was a delight to work with on every level. There are several sets of pictures of her in the costumes that were cut by Michael Rockett.
Especially interesting is the Travelling outfit in purple wool featured below in the revolving images on the left. Unfortunately in the final cut of the movie little of this outfit can be seen, so it is a great opportunity to examine the details including the hat which is sadly lost in the end cut of the film.
In the original script Estella was scheduled to travel to Morocco for her final re-union scene with Pip. For this outfit Michael cut a beautiful light and airy cream outfit with exquisite details, which was once again unfortunately unable to be used. Below are some photographs of it with details highlighted.
The dress that is featured the most on screen on Estella is the celery green dress with a beautiful neckline of organza that has been de-threaded to create a feathered edge. This is used to frame her decollate below are pictures of this from various angles and includes the embroidery detail that is featured on the back.
Working with costume designer Beatrix Pasztor the main challenge with the textile design on the film was creating the many-layered extravaganza that Helena Bonham Carter wore to play Miss Havisham. There had already been many incarnations of Miss Havisham on film and the intention was to approach the character this time with an angle that had not been previously explored. Many experiments and many hours in the dye room creating samples resulted in the components that contributed to the finished creation worn by Helena Bonham Carter.
The director Mike Newell was visionary in his concepts, and Beatrix was interested in exploring the idea that Miss Havisham while remaining caged inside her house and her own mind, she was also caged inside the dress which was disintegrating and revealing the bones and corsets beneath that were holding it together. The dress is a metaphor for the emotional graveyard that inhabits her mind. To see more examples of the textiles that were designed to create the film check in soon!
Please stay tuned for more 'behind-the-scenes' images and details. If you have any questions please use the contact form to e mail us.