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To me, the most impressive thing about the musical Into the Woods, Disney’s big Oscar hopeful this season, is the quality of its craftwork — the great Colleen Atwood‘s costumes, Peter Swords King‘s hairstyling and makeup and J. Roy Helland‘s makeup work with Meryl Streep. It is, literally and figuratively, out of this world.
Read more Can Costume Designer Colleen Atwood Pull Off an Extremely Rare Oscar Feat?
For that reason, The Hollywood Reporter is pleased to exclusively debut a featurette — which will later appear as part of a TV promotional spot for the film — about how those aspects all came together.
Among the more notable things discussed in the eight-minute piece:
- How Atwood, a 10-time Oscar nominee, worked with director Rob Marshall — with whom she previously collaborated on Chicago (2002), Memoirs of a Geisha (2005) and Nine (2009), earning noms for all three and winning for the first two — and the actors to devise the looks of the various costumes
- The thought process behind some of the most memorable costumes in the film — Cinderella’s dress for the ball, the Wolf’s zoot suit and the Witch’s outfit, among others — and how Atwood oversaw what Streep describes as “the largest shop I’ve ever seen on a film of seamstresses”
- How Atwood managed to hide the ironic fact that Emily Blunt, who was playing the baby-craving Baker’s Wife, was, in fact, very pregnant in real life
- Why King felt that modern hairstyles were appropriate for almost all the characters except Cinderella’s evil family
- How Helland — who has known Streep for 40 years, has been her personal makeup artist on every film that she’s been a part of since Sophie’s Choice (1982) and won an Oscar for The Iron Lady (2011) — works to blend her vision for a character’s appearance with his (Watch her thank him profusely, calling him “my other partner” in addition to her husband, when she won her Oscar for The Iron Lady.)
Bizarrely, Into the Woods was left off of the Academy’s best makeup and hairstyling Oscar shortlist but remains the clear favorite to win the best costume design Oscar.
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