CDG - The Costume Designer

Summer 2019

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 17 of 59

18 The Costume Designer Summer 2019 Travis Banton By Anna Wyckoff A Hollywood Reunion On July 13, Hollywood Heritage staged the "wedding" of two original costume pieces from Ernst Lubitsch's 1929 sound debut The Love Parade, designed by the Costume Design legend, Travis Banton, following a screening of the film. Paramount costume archivist Randall Thropp says, "We thought it would be great to reunite all the elements that made up the Jeanette MacDonald wedding dress. I am consistently in awe of the crafts people Travis Banton engaged to create some of the most spectacular costumes in Hollywood. The dress and wedding train are a testament to his creativity and those tireless workers who made his visions a reality." The gown is owned by private collector Greg Schreiner, who fell in love with the dress and restored it with the help of Shawn Lockridge, an assistant to late Costume Designer Ret Turner. The Paramount Archives is in possession of the original crown, which is made in the style of a Russian headdress and the 20-foot-long train. Encrusted with pearls, bugle beads, and embroidery, the train weighs nearly 30 pounds. One tale describes an exasperated MacDonald telling Lubitsch, "You wear that damn thing!" then storm- ing off set. When she returned, he was wearing it smoking a cigar, with boys in braided livery holding the train. This story is not beyond the realm of pos- sibility as the director often described precisely what he envisioned for his actor, sometimes wearing the costume. But fireworks off screen are blissfully absent from the final film, which is as delightful and charm- ing 90 years later. The garment comes to life during the enchanting wedding sequence—the dress seems featherweight and the spangled train is held up effort- lessly on the finger-tips. Moderated by Leonard Maltin, proceeds from the event will support the preservation of the 128-year- old Lasky-DeMille Barn, the home of the Hollywood Heritage Museum. For more information on future events visit: 18 The Costume Designer Summer 2019

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of CDG - The Costume Designer - Summer 2019