MILAN — The much-anticipated Baz Luhrmann biopic movie “Elvis” will have its share of high fashion, courtesy of Prada and Miu Miu.
Miuccia Prada has once again lent her flair for vintage fashion and sophisticated bling — which resonate particularly well with the style of the music legend and king of rock ‘n’ roll Elvis Presley and his wife Priscilla — by creating costumes in tandem with Oscar-winning costume designer Catherine Martin for the Luhrmann-directed movie.
The movie, which premieres on May 24 at the Cannes Film Festival before hitting theaters in June, chronicles the life and music of Presley, his iconic style as well as that of the era. It stars Austin Butler in the leading role of Presley, Oscar winner Tom Hanks as his enigmatic manager, Colonel Tom Parker, and Olivia DeJonge as Priscilla, among others.
Hints of the collaboration came at the latest Met Gala, when the cast, including Butler, DeJonge, Kacey Musgraves, Kelvin Harrison Jr., as well as Luhrmann, Martin and Priscilla herself, all showed up on the red carpet donning custom looks by Prada that channeled the music star’s love for bling.
“Central to the Elvis narrative is Elvis and Priscilla’s legendary love story. Priscilla Presley’s beauty and iconic style has indelibly marked contemporary culture,” Martin said.
“Accordingly, it was important for Baz and I that we remain true to this legacy by not merely imitating Ms. Presley’s actual clothes, but that we find a modern way of connecting audiences to her distinctive, history-making style. It was wonderful for both Baz and I to collaborate creatively with Miuccia once again,” she added.
The creative process entailed studying the Presleys’ style and deep-diving into the Prada and Miu Miu archives, where she found similarities and sources of inspiration “to translate the Presleys’ historical clothes into the costumes that would be in the film,” Martin explained.
Elvis Presley’s signature swinging style was given the Prada treatment, including a red-purple, lapel-less suit boasting a dramatic collar. The brocade pantsuit and flowing top covered in beads and fringes that Priscilla Presley wore at a concert in Las Vegas in the late ’60s was updated into a more contemporary rendition for the movie, nodding to Miu Miu’s signature beadwork and crystals, while Prada’s painterly checks from the spring ’96 collection were worked into a geometric skirt suit in bright orange.
Other iconic looks of Elvis’ partner, such as the tweed full-skirted dress worn over a mohair sweater and layered under a brown suede jacket sported for the NBC Elvis Special, were also reinvented for the movie.
This marks the third time the trio has collaborated on costume designs. Prada also created exclusive fashion for Luhrmann’s “The Great Gatsby” in 2013 and for the “Romeo + Juliet” movie in 1996.
In both titles, fashion played a pivotal role in defining characters’ personalities and proved the Italian designer’s ability to reinterpret period style with contemporary flair.
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