Best Costume Design – 1978

Official Nominations: Death On The Nile. Caravans. Days Of Heaven. The Swarm. The Wiz.

Agatha Christie works are usually good for a nomination here, alongside other period pieces. It deserves a nomination for sure, but there’s nothing to stand out. Caravans is a mostly listless film which has never received much critical or fan praise, so it seems odd that it received any nomination beyond being another nod for the lady who worked on Cleopatra. The Swarm is equally odd given the fact that it is a mostly ridiculed film and that it doesn’t seem to have any Design flair beyond any other movie of the week. Days Of Heaven at least looks the part, even if the costumes themselves don’t stand out in any shape or form, while The Wiz succeeds where the others mostly fail, making the costumes an extension of the character as well as being memorable on their own.

My Winner: The Wiz

The Wiz: Michael Jackson Behind the Scenes on the Original | Time

My Nominations: The Wiz. Superman. Halloween. Dawn Of The Dead. Days Of Heaven. The Deer Hunter. Death On The Nile. Grease.

The official winner and my winner survive to my list of nominations, joining some obvious and less obvious options. Superman features one of the all time iconic costumes and while that costume wasn’t designed from scratch for the movie, this version of it is probably still the most famous and preferred. Throw in the work to compare Clark’s childhood country life with the design of the big city, alongside those used in the Krypton scenes, and it’s obvious a lot of thought and care went into the design. If Superman features a famous whole costume, then Halloween features a single iconic item – the Michael Myers mask. It’s more than a mask, becoming a symbol of fear in the film and its sequels. Dawn Of The Dead takes special, zany, consideration to the costume design of its zombies with an array of ridiculous and individual costumes.

The Deer Hunter could have earned a nomination here mainly on the basis of being nominated elsewhere, but its clever contrast of home versus ‘over there’, and before versus after is another weapon in its arsenal. Finally, Grease is a film I would have guessed received more nominations than it actually did, with this category being a fairly obvious choice. Both Travolta and Olivia Newton John parade around in costumes which have been parodied over the years, and the backing collection of characters and dancers are each attired in colourful extensions of various 1950s caricatures.

My Winner: Grease

Let us know your winner in the comments!

Best Costume Design – 1977

Official Nominations: Star Wars. Airport 77. Julia. A Little Night Music. The Other Side Of Midnight.

This was a no brainer. Airport 77 is merely an excuse to give Edith Head her yearly nomination, while A Little Night Music is the Academy forcing another musical into the category, regardless of how bad it is. Julia and The Other Side Of Midnight are worthy nominees but being period pieces not so far removed from a recent period of history they don’t feel as startling as nominees from other years. Star Wars then creates a new Universe populated by planets and characters with their own individual fashions and styles. Even if the film only featured Vadar and everyone else wearing the same bland outfit, it would win. Of course we have iconic outfits on a conveyor belt, from the Stormtroopers to Leia’s various dresses, to Han’s space-age gunslinger garb… it’s one of the easiest Oscar wins in history.

My Winner: Star Wars

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My Nominations: Star Wars. A Bridge Too Far. The Duellists. New York New York. Jabberwocky.

It’s a little pointless again because we know what the winner is. A Bridge Too Far goes all in on the authentic costumes while The Duellists has more flair, New York New York hits the musical quotient if we must, and Jabberwocky recycles from Holy Grail with a few updates.

My Winner: Star Wars

Let us know your winner in the comments!

Best Costume Design – 1976

Official Nominations: Fellini’s Casanova. Bound For Glory. The Incredible Sarah. The Passover Plot. The Seven Percent Solution.

On the surface this sure seems like a stinker – if the average movie fan has seen any of these it’ll be Bound For Glory which, set in the 1930s only forty years earlier doesn’t exactly strike the period itch adequately. Fellini’s Casanova got the win this year, scratching that itch in a more satisfying manner being set in the 1700s. It feels like an underrated Fellini entry but it’s probably the best adaptation of the life of Casanova, portraying the character in a less than favourable light. The other three films… they range from passable to interesting but none have a hope of winning here.

My Winner: Fellini’s Casanova

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My Nominations: Fellini’s Casanova. Bugsy Malone. Buffalo Bill And The Indians. Logan’s Run.

Although I thoroughly loath the film, Bugsy Malone deserves a nod here – not only getting the period marks but also for fitting all those suits and dresses on the kids. Buffalo Bill And The Indians has some snazzy designs while Logan’s Run may be dated now but still retains a unique enough set of designs for its dystopian paradise/nightmare.

My Winner: Fellini’s Casanova

Let us know your winner in the comments!

Best Costume Design – 1975

Official Nominations: Barry Lyndon. The Four Musketeers. Funny Lady. The Magic Flute. The Man Who Would Be King.

I have no real complaints with this one, though I’m not sure Funny Lady really does enough to warrant a nomination. The Magic Flute is dubious too, given that it’s basically a stage opera. The other three films fall into the epic or literary adaptation category and there isn’t much to choose between them.

My Winner: The Man Who Would Be King

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My Nominations: The Man Who Would Be King. Barry Lyndon. The Four Musketeers. The Wind And The Lion. Monty Python And The Holy Grail. Picnic At Hanging Rock. The Rocky Horror Picture Show. The Stepford Wives.

A few extra films added, but again none of them truly stand out from any of the others. In that case I go for the most iconic option.

My Winner: The Rocky Horror Picture Show

Let us know your winner in the comments!

Best Costume Design – 1974

Official Nominations: The Great Gatsby. Chinatown. Daisy Miller. The Godfather Part II. Murder On The Orient Express.

It wasn’t my intention to have The Godfather Part II win everything, but when you compare it to everything else here, remembering it features styles from at least two entirely different eras spread between US and Sicily, it’s the clear winner. The Great Gatsby got the official win, as period pieces generally do, and while it is authentic it’s at least an equal to Daisy Miller. Chinatown and Murder On The Orient Express are on fairly level footing too.

My Winner: The Godfather Part II

My Nominations: The Great Gatsby. Chinatown. Daisy Miller. The Godfather Part II. Murder On The Orient Express. Blazing Saddles. The Golden Voyage Of Sinbad. Zardoz.

All the regulars make it over, and I add a few more period pieces. Zardoz…. has to be seen to be believed, and if you see Sean Connery’s costume you know all you need to know. About anything. Blazing Saddles speaks for itself, while The Golden Voyage Of Sinbad earns my alternative pick thanks to plenty of fine detail fleshing out many of its exuberant characters.

My Winner: The Golden Voyage Of Sinbad

Let us know in the comments which film you pick as winner!

Best Costume Design – 1973

Official Nominations: The Sting. Cries And Whispers. Ludwig. Tom Sawyer. The Way We Were.

There is really only one winner out of these choices, and another notch for Edith Head. It’s The Sting, it’s old-timey, you already know it’s my winner. Cries And Whispers seems like too basic a choice, the costumes are mere footnote to the rest of the visuals. Ludwig would have been in with a shot had it been more successful – it definitely looks the part, while Tom Sawyer has been made so many times now it’s difficult to see anyone doing anything unique with it. The Way We Were has absolutely no business being nominated here.

My Winner: The Sting

My Nominations: The Sting. Ludwig. Pat Garrett And Billy The Kid. The Three Musketeers. Westworld.

Three period pieces are added to my list – a traditional Western, a futuristic Western, and maybe the best take on d’Artagnan, Milady and co (aside from Dogtanian). No point discussing them though, as there’s still only one winner.

My Winner: The Sting

Let us know in the comments which film you pick as having the Best Costume Design of 1973!

Best Costume Design – 1972

Official Nominations: Travels With My Aunt. The Godfather. Lady Sings The Blues. The Poseidon Adventure. Young Winston.

It’s a weird one. In a year that Cabaret gets nominated for almost everything, it fails to get nominated for one of the most obvious categories. All the stranger is the fact that Lady Sings The Blues is nominated over it. The Academy seemed determined to make sure Travels With My Aunt won something, so here we are. The Poseidon Adventure gets a nomination for sheer scope and detail and Young Winston gets a period piece nod too. None of the films here stand out for any obvious reason, so when in doubt go with The Godfather.

Official Winner: The Godfather

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My Nominations: The Godfather. Cabaret. Poseidon Adventure.

There isn’t really anything additional this year that I would want to add, aside from Cabaret.

My Winner: The Godfather

Let us know in the comments which film you choose to win Best Costume Design!

Best Costume Design – 1971

Official Nominations: Nicholas And Alexandra. Bedknobs And Broomsticks. Death In Venice. Mary, Queen Of Scots. What’s The Matter With Helen.

Two obvious picks with two big costume dramas – three other normals. Take your pick between Yvonne Blake and Antonio Castillo’s Nicholas And Alexandra and Margaret Furse’s Mary, Queen Of Scots. 

My Winner: Nicholas And Alexandra

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My Nominations: Nicholas And Alexandra. Mary, Queen Of Scots. A Clockwork Orange. McCabe And Mrs Miller. Red Sun. Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory.

Along with the costume dramas I add three should-have-beens, and one never-would-have-been. A Clockwork Orange may not at first glance seem as visually arresting as some of Kubrick’s other work, but the attention to detail in costume and set design is paramount. A Clockwork Orange wouldn’t be see unnerving without the pale, iconic, almost jumpsuit look of Alex and his droogs often as a counterpoint to the more stylized 70s flair of everyone else. McCabe And Mrs Miller is of course a gorgeous movie with the costumes a huge part of the overall tone, while the characters in Willy Wonka And The Chocolate Factory appear as extensions of their clothing – from the drab look of Charlie and his grandfather to the exuberant red festive attire of Veruca, not to mention Wonka and the Oompa Loompas. Finally, lets add Red Sun as it doesn’t get mentioned enough.

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My Winner: A Clockwork Orange

Let us know your winner in the comments below!

Best Costume Design – 1970

Official Nominations : Cromwell. Airport. Darling Lili. The Hawaiians. Scrooge.

Cromwell is a worthy winner, though on a personal note this era and style does little for me from any sort of aesthetic viewpoint. Airport gets a nod for the sheer scope and diversity on offer, Scrooge is much the same as Cromwell though a couple of centuries later. The Hawaiians and Darling Lili don’t really need to be here – both are fine but nothing out of the ordinary.

My Winner: Cromwell

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My Nominations: Cromwell. Tora Tora Tora. MASH. Brewster McCloud. Catch-22. The Conformist.

If I add one war movie, then I have to add them all – my three picks here all being of a similar quality. The Conformist gets another nomination, because of course it does, while Brewster McCloud is hilarious. It deserves a nomination for those wings alone. Well, that’s about the only ‘costume’ costume in the whole things, but anyway….

My Winner: Cromwell

Which film of 1970 do you pick as the winner for Best Costume Design – let us know in the comments!

Best Costume Design – 1969

Official Nominations: Anne Of The Thousand Days. Hello Dolly. Gaily Gaily. Sweet Charity. They Shoot Horses Don’t They.

Costumes. What can you say? They all look swell.

My Winner: Sweet Charity

My Nominations: Anne Of The Thousand Days. Hello Dolly. Sweet Charity. The Damned.

Not a lot more I can do with this one, so I’m throwing on The Damned as well.

My Winner: Sweet Charity.

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What film of 1969 do you pick as the Best Costume Design winner? Let us know in the comments!