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The Great Gatsby, Catherine Martin at Her Best!

2 May

There are many reviews about the anticipated movie, The Great Gatsby! Has Oscar gold written all over it! Perhaps Leonardo DiCaprio can allow us to be captured once again in this classic story of a man who brings all of his fantasies to life and then it catches up with him; known as reality! All happening while he falls in love, well sort of !

I know the story line, I read the book! Saw the movie with Robert Redford and Mia Farrow. However, these are not the reasons why I love the book; it is simply how F. Scott Fitzgerald describes the era, the Art Deco period! The magnificent 1920’s.

I would have loved to be part of the set design crew. It is so incredible, how you can take a period of time and make it come to life. Well if Oscar-award winner; Catherine Martin has anything to do with it – it will be definitely be spectacular! She is the important elegant lady behind the scenes, she’s the film producer, costume designer and set designer! And she is the wife of the director, Baz Luhrmann < he’s such a smart man>!

Catherine Martin & Baz Luhrmann

She has 3 Oscars already and many awards for her achievements in the film industry; as well as design! The film was shot in Australia, but you would never know it – you will see how she will transform your imagination of how New York actually was in the 1920’s and captured it right there on the screen! It’s all about the details! This era was very lavish and it was depicted perfectly! <my opinion> A lot of research went into this film; to get it right and also to know what was going on in the world during that time, is very important! The film may touch upon some historical moments!

To summarize, the 1920s was a decade that began on January 1, 1920 and ended on December 31, 1929. It is sometimes referred to as the Roaring Twenties or the Jazz Age, when speaking about the United States, Canada, or the United Kingdom. In Europe the decade is sometimes called the “Golden Age Twenties” because of the economic boom following World War I.

Prohibition agents were often destroying barrels of alcohol in accordance to the 18th amendment, which made alcoholic beverages illegal throughout the entire decade. In 1927, Charles Lindbergh embarks on the first nonstop flight from New York to Paris on the Spirit of St. Louis. Wall Street, after the 1929 stock market crash led to the Great Depression. Benito Mussolini and Fascist Black Shirts; the March on Rome in 1922. The People’s Liberation Army attacked government defensive positions in Shandong, during the Chinese Civil War. There’s the Women’s suffrage campaign which leads to numerous countries granting women the right to vote and be elected! My favorite; an All American highlight – Babe Ruth becomes the most iconic baseball player of the time!

Please don’t be surprise if Catherine Martin hits the mark to win a few Oscars, definitely for costume design and set design! Don’t forget her husband, Baz Luhrmann too! Oh! How about the musical score! Jay-Z co-wrote the original musical score for the film; he’s not new to this – he also directed Luhrmann’s period films “Romeo & Juliet” and “Moulin Rouge”. Let’s say OSCAR!

Brooks Brothers, Harrod’s, and Prada were all involved in getting it just right for this film too! I love, L.O.V.E this era!!!! The divine clothes – where tailored suits were worn everyday and the dresses; although they were heavy – they were beautiful and fabulous! Sewn to perfection! The distinct furniture, the buildings, the trains, even the cigarette holders…. I could go on and on – I will just stop here…..but it’s a designer’s dream!

Catherine Martin and Miuccia Prada Dress Gatsby exhibition IS in New York. If interested – the 1920s costumes, inspired by vintage catwalk looks from the Prada and Miu Miu archives, will be on show at the Prada New York Epicenter until May 12 before moving on to Tokyo and Shanghai.  Please click link to view:

Do take the time to read a bit more about the era before seeing the film, if you can. The Great Gatsby will hit theatres on May 10th, where the cast of stars will take you to a different place: Tobey Maguire, Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan, and Joel Edgerton. Enjoy!

Letia Mitchell LifeStyle & Design Letia

Pictures provided by Entertainment, Time INC, Screen Crush and Movie Critic, Warner Bros. The film adaptions of the Great Gatsby has occurred in 1926, 1949, 1974 and 2013.

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