*Marvel’s “Captain America: Civil War” is the highest-grossing film of 2016 domestically, internationally and globally, earning more than $1.14 billion at the worldwide box office. It also continues Marvel Studios’ 13th consecutive film from the Marvel Cinematic Universe to debut at #1 at the domestic box office.
In advance of the DVD/Blu-ray release on Sept. 13, EUR/Electronic Urban Report chatted with ‘Civil War’ costume designer Judianna Makovsky. The 3-time Academy Award nominee has been honored for her work on the films “Seabiscuit,” “Pleasantville” and “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone,” for which she was also nominated for a BAFTA award.
The ‘Captain America’ Blu-ray/DVD includes more than 60-minutes of exclusive bonus material, as well as: an inside look at the evolution of lead characters Steve Rogers and Tony Stark, a behind-the-scenes exclusive on the making of Marvel’s “Captain America: Civil War,” never-before-seen deleted scenes and hilarious outtakes. Plus, home audiences can learn more about the latest additions to the MCU and get an exclusive, first look at Marvel’s “Doctor Strange,” starring Benedict Cumberbatch, coming to theaters Nov. 4, 2016.
Makovsky has had a long and distinguished career lending her outstanding costume design work to over 30 films, some of which include “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” “The Hunger Games,” and “X-Men: The Last Stand.”
For her work on ‘Civil War,’ Judianna told us that Black Panther was the most challenging primarily because it was a new character, and the visual development team at Marvel wanted to do “something that would be believable on camera, and would work well for the actor.”
She also revealed how delightful it was to work on Vision’s wardrobe because of the fun they had putting him in “real clothes.”
“It was such a change for him. To see him with the make-up and regular clothes on was kind of goofy but believable. We all had fun with that one,” she said.
Considering that you had a template to work with, in terms of how the characters costumes look in the comic books, how much liberty were you allowed while dressing these superheroes?
JM: Well, it depends on which character. Certain characters have been in the comics and go from film to film. It’s a very specific collaboration with Marvel. Marvel has a lot to say about how their iconic characters look. But certain characters, ya know, if it’s not going to translate to film, like Scarlet Witch, that kind of a character you have a little more leeway. But when it’s Captain America’s suit, or Black Panther, where the concept has already been there, Marvel has a lot to say if you’re using an image from a Marvel comic. So I work really closely with their visual development team to produce whatever they want.
Was it important to pull aspects from the character’s superhero costumes and incorporate them into their civilian clothes?
JM: Yes, we try to keep the characters consistent all the way through. Captain America always [has] some sort of very All-American look to him. Scarlet Witch always has some sort of Avant-garde clothing to her aspect. It’s interesting because the contemporary clothes are actually very hard to do. We usually end up making them all, which people don’t really know that. We don’t just go buy clothes. We make everything for them so we can keep that kind of consistency with their character, and it’s always about controlling the color and controlling the palette also. We keep each character within a palette.
Chadwick Boseman as Black Panther in “Captain America: Civil War”
Audiences got to see a glimpse of Black Panther in ‘Civil War,’ so what types of elements were you inspired by to bring this comic hero to life?
JD: Well, again, it really does comes from the comic and working very closely with the head of visual development at Marvel. Picking the elements from the comics and then sort of translating it into something a little more high-tech. But most of the elements do sort of come from the comic, then there’s a bit of ethnic decoration if you get in very closely on the helmet and on his feet and hands. There’s all kinds of little ethnic designs in there. But that one is definitely one of Marvel’s. They were very much involved with that costume.
Fans know that Black Panther comes from African royalty. Did that culture influence some of your styling choices, or did you work 100% from the template that was already there?
JM: I think we relied mostly on what’s there because there’s a Black Panther movie coming out, and we did not want to have to impose to much of our ideas on what was coming up in the Black Panther film. We were not creating Wakanda. Wakanda is coming now, they’re actually working on that. So we didn’t want to put too many restrictions on them since there was so little of that in our film. And in Civil War, you don’t see him in Wakanda. You see him at the UN, or you see him somewhere else. If you really do look at a royal figure and royalty in Africa, most of them, particularly the young ones, are education in Switzerland. They’re very sort of Eurocentric in their dress — very Western in their dress. We tried not to get involved with too much Wakanda so that the Black Panther film could have complete control over that. At the end of the film, I have one costume on Black Panther when he is T’Challa and he’s in regular clothes in his home country. We tried to just put a little bit of ethnicity in his suit, but not go to far.
You have worked on some incredible films, and many of my personal favs. In terms of your body of work to date, where does ‘Civil War’ rank?
JM: To work on Marvel films you become a bit of a family, with not only the Marvel team, but the people who work on the other Marvel films. You all have to interact and work together and get information from the different films. So it’s just a process working on these films [that’s] a lot of fun.
“Black Panther” is scheduled to hit theaters in July 2018, and check out the ‘Black Panther Featurette’ via the clip below.
Marvel’s “Captain America: Civil War” hit Digital HD September 2, and 3D Blu-ray, Blu-ray, DVD, VOD and arrives on Digital SD September 13.
Check out the ‘Civil War’ gag reel via the clip below.