Academy Award-Winning costume desginer Janty Yates takes on dressing megawatt stars for House of Gucci—in more than just Gucci.
Actress Lady Gaga plays the role of Patrizia Reggiani
ACADEMY AWARD-WINNING COSTUME DESIGNER JANTY YATES TAKES ON DRESSING MEGAWATT STARS FOR HOUSE OF GUCCI—IN MORE THAN JUST GUCCI.
When Janty Yates first heard about the House of Gucci (out Nov. 24) project six years ago, it was through director Sir Ridley Scott’s wife, Lady Giannina Scott, a producer on the film who had this project for “something like 20 years,” the costume designer says. Though the story about the assassination of former Gucci fashion house head Maurizio Gucci was different than the other films Yates has worked on with Scott—including Gladiator, which earned her her first Oscar for best costume design—it wasn’t a huge departure as the duo worked on ’70s-era films like American Gangster and All the Money in the World together. “Ridley and I always said to each other, ‘Well, we don’t have any problem with the ’70s, ’80s, ’90s because we were there!’” she says.
Adam Driver as Maurizio Gucci, the former head of the Gucci fashion house.
Yates’ biggest inspiration for the costume design comes from the auteur himself. “He’s the biggest inspiration you could ever have. His clothing, his dress in the ’70s and ’80s was superb,” she says. “He dressed at the best shops, the trendiest shops. He had the most wonderful clothes—I heard about his rose-colored velvet suits, his boots that lasted for 30 years that were glorious—cowboy boots, which you don’t get in England.” The designer also gained inspiration from the Gucci archive as well as two archives including an Italian one that she never even knew existed. “They had rail after rail of the most wonderful costumes. It was very exciting,” she says.
She admits, though, that it was primarily due to the film’s lead, Lady Gaga (playing the infamous Patrizia Reggiani), or, as Yates calls her, “LG,” that she got access to these archives as well as other design houses. “She has a great relationship with all these designers and they just want to help her, which is wonderful,” Yates says of being able to rent out from the Italian costume house, which normally keeps the archival designs on hand to reference for future inspiration. Gaga was also able to pull costumes from Valentino, Ungaro, Alaïa and others. So much about the House of Gucci film was about the costume and setting the tone for the characters. And when she got the green light to be able to ship the Gucci archive to L.A., the best part was “LG fit them all perfectly, it was wonderful! It was as though they were made for her.”
Adam Driver and Lady Gaga
Designing for approximately 85 actors was not an easy feat. “LG had 64 script day appearances! I think we did narrow it down, but it was still a lot,” Yates says. Working with the actress, however, was very collaborative. “She knows her stuff about costumes,” she adds. As for the film’s other stars, “Adam [Driver] is an absolute shoe-in for Maurizio [Gucci]—tall, elegant,” she says. She created about 35 suits for him, and the rest were sports jackets and blazers. For Al Pacino, who plays Aldo Gucci, she had about 15 suits made with the help of the Zegna fashion house and her tailor, Len Logsdail. “He’s English, Savile Row, but he’s been in New York now for 30 years; he’s just spectacular—the guy to go to,” she says. For Jared Leto, who plays Paolo Gucci and had to wear fat suits, she had Naples-based Cesare Attolini tailors make his big, lined check suits and striped shirts and big ties. With the help of her cutter, London-based Dominique Young, Yates also made many Yves Saint Laurent-inspired looks.
Lady Gaga as Patrizia Reggiani in House of Gucci
Other than the enormous amount of costumes, the biggest challenge she faced was “trying to make everything new—by new, I mean vintage but new,” Yates says. And for Gaga, “we had to draw a fine line because Ridley didn’t want to make her pastiche.” She admits she was “terrified” of talking to Gaga about it, and one of the first days of working together, Gaga told her, “Listen, I really want to dress like my mother.” Yates was elated as Ridley wanted to keep her “railed in a bit.” In the end, it worked out because “LG would just augment in her own way.”
Costume designer Janty Yates.
And while Gucci is a now globally renowned fashion house, little is known about the Gucci family drama. When Yates first heard about the script floating around, she immersed herself in the history. “It’s a bigger scandal than Gianni Versace,” she says. “That happened in Miami, of course, but this is really going to open some eyes.”
Photography by: METRO GOLDWYN MAYER PICTURES INC. © 2021 METRO-GOLDWYN-MAYER PICTURES INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, Fabio Lovino, Kerry Brown