Meet the Fashion Designers of "Sing 2"-The New York Times

2021-11-25 10:10:55 By : Ms. Jennie He

Rodarte designers make costumes for the sequel to the animated film "Sing".

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An animated elephant is personified as a shy girl who is obsessed with an ice cream vendor. When she performs Aretha Franklin's "I say a little prayer" in front of the vendor, what should she wear on the stage?

This is the problem faced by Laura and Kate Mulleavy. The latter is known for designing fashion brand Rodarte. Three years ago, the sisters were appointed as costume designers for the animated film "Sing 2" by Illumination. The company’s most famous is Bring the "little yellow man" into the world.

This is not the first time the sisters have designed costumes for a feature film about performers solving problems on stage. In 2010, they co-created costumes for Darren Aronofsky's Gothic ballet "Black Swan". But this is the first time they have designed animations for zoo animals, including pigs (voiced by Reese Witherspoon), porcupines (Scarlett Johansson), and lions that stage a space opera in a Las Vegas-style town (Bono).

Of course, there are more questions-problems that will arise throughout the production process, Kate Mulliway said: "How do we get the action correct? How do we get the correct texture? How do we get the most detailed information possible?"

Here, for the sake of clarity, in a streamlined and edited interview, the sisters discussed the complexity of fashion animation, including their inspiration for the excellent costumes of the movie (worn by Mina, the infatuated teenage elephant): 1 A crystal-encrusted hooded cloak, in several shades of blue. It was a long white dress with a huge train-all ruffles and chiffon and unabashed innocence.

How did you start designing such a dress for animation?

Kate Mulleavy: Her character is full of soul, and we want to reveal this through her costume changes. When she took off her cloak to reveal this beautiful dress, the train floated a bit, looking really spectacular. When you have a magical wind, try to get what chiffon does...animation is just a long process.

Laura Mulleavy: If I remember correctly, her cloak took a year. There are some things we really want to achieve, such as the details of manual smoking. It is very easy to make perfect things in animation. What we want to bring is the fact that what we do is either hand-made or a hand-made technique-to make it look special and interesting, not like a cookie-cutter.

Even to this fold shape and crystal application, and then to the gradient color inside the cloak. It took so long because it was more than just like, "Oh, let dark blue and blue-green blend together." We had to recreate an effect that you can get from hand dyeing.

Those details, back and forth to make sure that the blue passes in the right part of her-it takes a lot of work.

You published some Rodarte collections between 2018 and 2021. Does any aspect of your work in "Sing 2" permeate these collections, and vice versa?

Kate: Sometimes this problem arises when you design clothes-in our case, if you come from your own fashion company. How much should Rodarte appear in clothing? We must have a creative point of view, these things can be intertwined in a sense.

Rather than let the movie influence what we are doing, let us rethink what we have done. Sometimes you will divide. You did something and you never think about it again. For fashion, you always try to move forward or take a new step in a different direction, even if it is within your language; the handwork we have done over the years-aging, beading, hand dyeing and what we said at the time We will never do this again.

In a sense, this is a very simple clothing design project. But in the fashion industry, "Meta Universe" has recently received a lot of attention, and brands have transformed their appearance into avatars in video games or animated characters. For you, is the work of "Sing 2" related to this phenomenon?

Laura: I don't connect them. This is definitely the spirit of the times, but this is a feature film that took three years to produce. This does not look like a gimmick, and it is not. Fashion entering these spaces is a way to make money, and I think it’s not bad. I think this is great, this is what we did. This is exciting and a way to create brand awareness.

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Kate: But our main idea is to put some handmade things that we have made in a new space. So in a sense, it has some meta elements because it refers to what we do. I think if you like Rodarte, you can watch the stage performance and see it at the end of the movie.

Laura: I think all of this can be traced back to virtual reality. "Singing", yes, it brings me closer to understanding, for example, what is the virtual reality version we made? That is definitely the future.

Kate: I walked away and thought, "I have been making these clothes that exist as objects." We have a complete file that records everything we do. This is something I made without any physical objects, I think it is as real as anything I have made, and it may be something that someone will see in 100 years. Knowing that you can transcend material things is creatively exciting.

"Sing 2" will be released on December 22.