Amazing Movie Costumes

In honor of the new Cruella movie coming out this week, I thought it would be fun to take a look at the coolest costumes in movies and shows, and just appreciate the creativity and hard work that costume designers give to our favorite nerdy fandoms.

Cruella de Vil, of course, is a fashion designer, which is why she is so intent on getting the fur of Dalmatians to create a coat unlike any before. This new movie follows her as she goes from street urchin to the success of high fashion. Costume design for movies takes a lot of work, from designing to creating, making sure that it tells the story of the character, as well as is visually cohesive with the artistic style of the movie itself.

Under some movies, I’ve marked if they were (*)Oscar Nominated for Best Costume Design or a (**)Oscar Winner for Best Costume Design.

Also, there are some names who are have worked on multiple movies, and one specifically I wanted to point out was Colleen Atwood, who has worked extensively in nerdy movies.

  • Into the Woods
  • Snow White and the Huntsman
  • A Series of Unfortunate Events
  • Sweeney Todd
  • Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
  • Chicago
  • Sleepy Hollow
  • Little Women

Cruella de Vil

First, obviously we need to appreciate the outfit of not only the new Cruella movie, but also the ’90s Glenn Close 101 Dalmatians Cruella outfits.

Glenn Close Kept Cruella de Vil Costumes From 101 Dalmatians | POPSUGAR  Fashion
101 Dalmatians (1996)
Cruella' Trailer Mixes 'Maleficent,' 'Joker' And 'Minions'
Cruella (2021)


While we are at it, Disney always makes really cool costumes. Whether recreations of animated characters, or realistic outfits, you quickly understand a lot about the characters based on how they are dressed.

Oscar Melificent 2A – Silver Screen Modes by Christian Esquevin
Maleficent (2014)

*Anna B. Sheppard

Tim Burton's 'Alice': Oh, What a Wonderful, but Different, World - The New  York Times
Alice in Wonderland (2010)

**Colleen Atwood

Mulan': Ming-Na Wen on Filming Cameo With Daughter, Movie's Legacy
Mulan (2020)
Galleries | Pirates of the Caribbean
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End (2007)

Mary Poppins *Tony Walton, Returns *Sandy Powell

Movie Review: 'Into the Woods' (2014) — Eclectic Pop
Into the Woods (2014)

*Colleen Atwood


You know, those last few were musicals, and that reminds me, musicals go ALL OUT on costumes. When I majored in Musical Theatre in college, I took a Costume Construction class, and learned just how difficult sewing and costume design can really be.

The Red Room: "Broadway Melody" (song) in Singin' in the Rain
Singin’ In The Rain (1952)

1952 **Marcel Vertes 2001 **Catherine Martin and Angus Strathie

Canon | Criterion Close-Up
All That Jazz (1979)

** Albert Wolsky, who also worked on Ad Astra, Birdman, and The Manchurian Candidate.

Latinas LOVE Red Lipstick | West side story movie, West side story, West  side story 1961
West Side Story (1961)

**Irene Sharaff

Review: Les Misérables | Clothes on Film
Les Miserables (2012)

*Paco Delgado, who also worked on the upcoming Jungle Cruise, Cats, Glass, A Wrinkle in Time, and The Danish Girl.

Chicago (2002 film) - Alchetron, The Free Social Encyclopedia
Chicago (2002)

**Coleen Atwood

32 Fun facts about the 2004 movie 'The Phantom of the Opera' – NerdiPop!
The Phantom of the Opera (2004)

Fantasy/Science Fiction

What happens when you take the rules of reality away? As we break into your more fantastic stories, the outfits tend to follow.

The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm (1962) - The Dancing Princess |  List of fairy tales, Fairy tales, Silver screen
The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm (1962)

**Mary Wills

As I Said...: Fashion in Film: Camelot (1967)
Camelot (1967)

**John Truscott

Colleen Atwood, Snow White and the Huntsman | Charlize theron, Colleen  atwood, Female villains
Snow White and the Huntsman (2012)

*Coleen Atwood

**Eiko Ishioka

Fantastic Beasts **Coleen Atwood

Also, Judianna Makovsky, who was the Costume Designer for Sorcerer’s Stone, also worked on the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 3, and vol. 2, the upcoming The Suidcide Squad, Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame, Captain America: Civil War and Winter Soldier, The Hunger Games, The Last Airbender, X-Men: The Last Stand, and National Treasure.

**Ngila Dickson and Richard Taylor

Planet of the Apes' Celebrates 50 Years! - Make-Up Artist Magazine
Planet of the Apes (1968)

*Morton Haack

Watch 12 Monkeys | Prime Video
12 Monkeys (1995)

*Julie Weiss

The Fifth Element (1997)

Fruitless Pursuits: Courtney Coulson's Costume Critiques- Technology and  Textiles Part 1: Tron
Tron (1982)

*Elois Jenssen and Rosanna Norton

The Hunger Games Saga (2012-2015)

The Women Pull No Punches In Fiery, Feminist 'Mad Max' : NPR
Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)
Movie Production Photos: Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events |  A series of unfortunate events, Colleen atwood, Movie costumes
Series of Unfortunate Events (2004)

*Coleen Atwood


Of course, when you first want an outfit to jump off a page, you really don’t care about what it would look like in person. So how do you then translate those looks into reality?

Netflix Marvel’s The Defenders

Black Panther ** Ruth E. Carter

It’s also worth noting Alexandra Byrne, who was the Costume Designer for Thor, The Avengers, Guardians of the Galaxy, Avengers: Age of Ultron, and Doctor Strange, also worked on the upcoming The Flash, and The Aeronauts, Murder on the Orient Express, and The Phantom of the Opera.

Laura Jean Shannon, who worked on Iron Man, also has worked on The Boys, Black Lightning, Stargirl, Titans, Doom Patrol, The Jungle Book, Footloose, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, Zathura, Blade: Trinity, and Elf.

Anna B. Sheppard, who worked on Captain America: The Fist Avenger, also worked on Spider-Man: Far From Home, Maleficent, Inglourious Basterds, Band of Brothers, and Schindler’s List.

Sammy Sheldon, who worked on Ant-Man, also worked on the upcoming Eternals, Artemis Fowl, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, Annihilation, Assassin’s Creed, Ex Machina, The Imitation Game, Kick Ass, X-Men: First Class, Hellboy II, Stardust, V for Vendetta, and The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.


It’s great making costumes during different historical periods, because you can give older styles a new level of quality.

It seems like people love making great costumes for movies set in Ancient Roman or Mediterranean times.

The Robe” (1953) | The Jesus Question
The Robe (1953)

** Charles Le Maire and Emile Santiago

The View from the Chair — Walk of Life: An Analysis of Two Scenes from  William Wyler's 'Ben-Hur' (1959) – Curtain Going Up!
Ben-Hur (1959)

**Elizabeth Haffenden

Nina Foch, Laurence Olivier, Peter Ustinov, Tony Curtis, Kirk Douglas, John  Gavin, John Ireland and Jean Simmons in Spartacus 24x36 Poster at Amazon's  Entertainment Collectibles Store
Spartacus (1960)

**Valles and Bill Thomas

Dianne's Costumes and Research
Gladiator (2000)

**Janty Yates, who also worked on Alien: Covenant, The Martian, and Robin Hood (2010).

A March Through Film History: Samson and Delilah (1949)
Samson and Delilah (1949)

*Edith Head, Dorothy Jeakins, Elois Jenssen, Gile Steele, and Gwen Wakeling

Charting Elizabeth Taylor's Powerful Costumes in Cleopatra | AnOther
Cleopatra (1963)

**Irene Sharaff, Vittorio Nino Novarese, and Renié

Or 19th Century England.

War and Peace (1956) | Peace costume, Audrey hepburn movies, Audrey hepburn  movie posters
War and Peace (1956)

*Maria De Matteis

1971 – Nicholas and Alexandra – Academy Award Best Picture Winners
Nicholas and Alexandra (1971)

**Yvonne Blake and Antonio Castillo

Casanova- Fellini | Cool costumes, Fantasy dresses, Giacomo casanova
Fellini’s Casanova (1976)

**Danilo Donati

Sir Thomas More's family with Henry VIII in A Man for All Seasons (1966) -  IMDb | Historical movies, Movie costumes, Best costume design
A Man for All Seasons (1966)

**Elizabeth Haffenden and Joan Bridge

Королевская милость (Restoration) (1995)
Restoration (1995)

**James Acheson

Screen Style: The Duchess
The Duchess (2008)

**Michael O’Connor

Little Women': An Oral History of the 1994 Adaptation - The New York Times
LIttle Women (1994)

*Coleen Atwood

Little Women costume designer breaks down the March sisters' style |
Little Women (2019)

*Jacqueline Durran, who also worked on the upcoming The Batman, 1917, Beauty and the Beast, Black Mirror: Nosedive, Pan, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, and Pride & Prejudice.

Braveheart (1995)
Braveheart (1995)

*Charles Knode, who also worked on Blade Runner (1982).

Of course, history was interesting everywhere, not just Europe.

The Color Purple (1985) – Waldina
The Color Purple (1985)

*Aggie Guerard Rodgers, who also worked on Return of the Jedi, Rent, Fruitvale Station, Holes, Mr. Holland’s Opus, Beetlejuice, and American Graffiti.

The Great Gatsby (1974): Movie Review
The Great Gatsby (1974)

**Theoni V. Aldredge

The Great Gatsby's' Costume and Set Designs – The Hollywood Reporter
The Great Gatsby (2013)

*Catherine Martin

Double Great Gatsby!

The Last Emperor (1987) Costume Design by James Acheson | Classic film  costumes, Qing dynasty fashion, Last emperor
The Last Emperor (1987)

**James Acheson, who also worked on the Spider-Man Raimi trilogy, Daredevil, and Highlander.

Gate of Hell (1953) - Teinosuke Kinugasa - RoweReviews
Gate of Hell (1953)

**Mitsuzô Wada

Johnny Depp

Lastly, Johnny Depp never wears normal clothes. I want to note, there have already been in this list four times.

Johnny Depp Photo: edward scissorhands | Edward scissorhands, Colleen  atwood, Tim burton films
Edward Scissorhands (1990)
Movie-Musical Fashion: Sweeney Todd - College Fashion
Sweeney Todd (2007)

*Colleen Atwood

Pin on *Willy Wonka
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005)

*Gabriella Pescucci

Review: SLEEPY HOLLOW (1999) - cinematic randomness
Sleepy Hollow (1999)

*Coleen Atwood

What’s your favorite movie costume? Let us know in the comments below!

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One comment

  1. I’m so excited for Cruella on Disney+! I don’t know about you but I just love Emma Stone. Disney movies are so great, and 101 Dalmatians is one of my favorite. 2021 movies are looking pretty good!


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