Sabtu, 04 Februari 2017

Vin Diesel returns as Xander Cage in XXX movie 2017

Vin Diesel returns as Xander Cage after 15 years in a sequel to the original 2002 xXx and the 2005 Ice Cube outing xXx: State Of The Union. Talented costume designer Kim Tillman talked to me about Vin Diesel, Ruby Rose, and how to make a pair of pants survive a fall from a water tower without splitting.

When you first started this project, where did you look for inspiration?

I started with the first xXx. It’d been so long since I’d seen it. I really wanted to imagine the character of Xander Cage and see what he’d look like fourteen years later, which is roughly where we pick him up.
Vin Diesel returns as Xander Cage in XXX movie 2017
xXx: RETURN OF XANDER CAGE by Paramount Pictures and Revolution Studios
He’s been hiding out for all those years. We first see him in the tropics. He’s gone from snowboarding to extreme skateboarding. He’s been hiding out, and now he’s back. So what would this extreme sports guy who’s now become a patriot spy, what would be the mentality of that person. What does that look like?

In a way, I got lucky because (director) D. J. Caruso had this beautiful research board up in his office, and a lot of my visual research happened to match his. So we were both on the same page and we started our conversation halfway through rather than the beginning.

We exchanged images, a lot of them inspired by extreme skateboarders. They have a specific vibe, an effortless cool thing. Then we had to translate that to Vin Diesel's physique.

Who inspired Xander Cage in particular?

The world of extreme sports, and guys that I just think look cool. Kelly Slater, a surfer. He has a build and a look similar to Vin. David Beckham. A bit of Lenny Kravitz. People who have that effortless cool. Guys that have, as Vin would call it, “swagger.”

It’s extreme sports but Xander's a grown up. He’s not that punk kid anymore. He has more layers. I wanted to concentrate on that rock and roll vibe. And Vin has that already.

Vin is so connected to this character. He loves him. He was really psyched up for his return. We talked a lot about the old Xander. What to keep and what things do we add? We didn’t want to stray too far from what was already established.

Was there a conflict between practicality and style?

I wouldn’t call it a conflict. More of a math problem to solve. I really wanted them to look chic and urban. A lot of black. But we didn’t want them to look like they were doing stunts. I didn’t want everyone dressed head to toe in lycra.

A lot of the cast are athletes. Nina Dobrev was a dancer, Donnie Yen and Tony Jaa are both incredible martial artists, Chris Wu was a basketball player. So they all had their signature moves, specific kicks and stretches that we wanted to incorporate into the outfit. And a lot of these guys do a lot of their own stunt work.

We wanted them to look James Bond cool, while also incorporating those movements. So we really modified the clothes. We would add this fantastic stretch fabric and make it look like part of the outfit. We would take the piece that allowed them to move and turn it into a style piece. Stretch panels in the knee, to allow for excessive crouching, for example.

Some of the stunts people did for this movie were really outrageous. And when you watch sports, you see a lot of these kids now are actually doing these things. So the bar is raised. What are you going to do to top it, and how are you going to look dope while doing it? That was our mantra. It’s literally written in the script. (Laughs).
(L-R) Vin Diesel as Xander Cage, Donnie Yen as Xiang and Deepika Padukone as Serena Unger in CAGE by Paramount Pictures and Revolution Studios

(L-R) Vin Diesel as Xander Cage, Donnie Yen as Xiang and Deepika Padukone as Serena Unger in xXx: RETURN OF XANDER CAGE by Paramount Pictures and Revolution Studios

Were there any specific brands you focused on?

Greg Lauren, wonderful L.A. designer. He takes old Italian army canvas and he remakes it into beautiful clothing. He was incredibly appropriate for Ruby Rose’s character, who was ex-military and ex-special ops. We used a lot of Burberry, John Varvatos. Classic, masculine clothing.

Some Micheal Kors. Vin loved a specific pair of jeans by Dsquared2.

It was a mixture of big brands and custom pieces. And I have to say, some of the best craft people I’ve ever come across work in Toronto, where we shot. We do this stuff in L.A., but if I ever wanted to copy, make, or modify something, they made it very doable. I really have to commend my crew and their suggestions for craft people.

Two of the women in this movie are not damsel- in-distress types, but warriors. What’s your approach to designing powerful women?

I’m so glad that’s a topic of discussion for this movie. To my mind, each of these characters could’ve been a woman or a man. They wear shorts when it’s hot and jackets when it’s cold. Ruby, Nina and Deepika (Padukone) are obviously beautiful, we can’t ignore that. But not one of them were waiting to be rescued. They’re powerful, they’re resourceful, and they go up against the men as well.

And all the women had their own style, a very distinct look. You’re not going to mix them up.

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