Costume Designer Lindy Hemming talks about her work
on Casino Royale, and
the new James Bond - Daniel Craig...
Casino Royale Costume Designer Interview
- Lindy Hemming
9th December 2006
Lindy Hemming is James Bond’s personal
shopper. His elegant, stylish wardrobe is full of classic hand
made shirts and suits, cool leather jackets, and, of course,
the perfect fitting tuxedo for those occasions – like say,
playing high stakes poker - when nothing else will do. And it’s
all thanks to Lindy.
Months before the cameras started rolling at
Pinewood Studios or at any of the glamorous locations around
the world, Lindy was busy sourcing material, designing shirts
and suits and bargaining with some of Europe’s leading
fashion houses to secure the stunning outfits for Casino Royale.
The look of James Bond – played
for the first time by Daniel Craig – and the Bond
women is as much a part of the film as fast cars and dynamic
“You know, that’s one of the
things that for an actor when they come on to Bond is such
a lovely surprise,” says Lindy. “Because we
really do use some of the best tailoring in the world for
our actors and especially for Bond himself.”
The suits, designed by Lindy, come from
Brioni Roma, a leading Italian tailor. The shirts are hand
made by one of London’s finest gentleman’s
outfitters, Turnbull and Asser and Bond’s shoes and
boots are also hand made by London cobblers John Lobb Ltd.
And even his under garments are specially made by Sunspell,
a menswear company based in Nottingham, England.
Bond’s style, she says, has to be
a fine balance. “We want him to look contemporary
but classic, too. These films last a long, long time and
people look back at them and so you are trying to create
a look that won’t date very quickly.”
Above: Costume designer Lindy Hemming
Once Lindy had met with director Martin Campbell and producers
Michael Wilson and Barbara Broccoli and discussed their ideas
for Casino Royale, she met with Craig himself and then began
to source the clothes that would be seen in the film.
Each suit, every shirt and jacket, and pair
of shoes, has to be ordered in multiple so that they can be used
stages of a sequence in the film. For instance, if Bond is
wearing a tuxedo at the start of a sequence when he is playing
poker in the Casino Royale, it has to be immaculate.
Above: Lindy Hemming on the set, actually near Pinewood Studios
But later in the evening, when Bond has been involved in a fight
and a chase, that same suit is distressed and damaged. And then,
another replica suit has to be available for stunt doubles who
might have to stand in for Craig for a part of the action.
“So we would have something like 25 suits
for that scene because there’s Bond at the table and he
always has to be immaculate and you have to have about five (suits)
change for that – no creases in the bum and all that sort
of stuff,” she laughs. And then there’s a huge fight
sequences where he’s
falling down the stairs. And then he gets kidnapped and driven
away into the night and taken to be tortured and he has his clothes
cut off before he gets tortured. So there are about 25 suits
which are for him and his different stunt doubles. And
that applies to any garment that he wears. Like the chase at
the beginning (of the film) where he wears a shirt,
which I designed and had made, and those linen pants.
“There were something like 40 shirts and 40 pairs of trousers.
And for something like the cricket scene, where he goes to the
cricket pavilion and he kills a guy in the shower, even though
it’s only a few seconds in the film, there were about 30
versions of that suit.”
Lindy first joined the 007 team for GoldenEye back in 1995.
She won the Oscar for Best Costume Design in 2000 for her work
on Mike Leigh’s Topsy-Turvy and has been nominated for
two BAFTA Awards (Four Weddings and a Funeral and Porterhouse
Blue). Her other credits include Life Is Sweet, The Krays, Blood
and Wine, Little Voice, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider and Batman Begins.
Lindy is from Carmarthenshire in Wales and attended the Royal
Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) in London to study stage management.
Whilst there, she took a design course. “And that was it,
I knew there and then that I wanted to do costume,” she
recalls. She now divides her time between the UK and her home
When did you first start on Casino Royale?
Probably in about June, July of 2005. I’d read the script and then talked
to Michael (Wilson), Barbara (Broccoli) and Martin (Campbell). After that there
were a few meetings with Martin where we discussed the film and what he intended
to do and what kind of film it would be. And then the next stage was to talk
to Daniel Craig and to go through the script with him and pass on the costume
department’s intentions according to what had already been discussed and
to pick up his ideas as well, of course. Because I know him and I’ve worked
with him before a couple of times.
Where do you get the clothes for Bond?
Well, from different sources. For Bond himself, we have his suits made by an
Italian company we have used for a long time called Brioni Roma and they
tailor all of his suits, day wear and evening. We have a lot of his shirts
made in London by Turnbull and Asser. We have his shoes and boots hand made
by a London company called John Lobb Ltd. And all of his under garments,
T-shirts, things like that, come from Sunspell Menswear in England. You know,
that’s one of the things that, for an actor when they come on to Bond,
is such a lovely surprise. Because we really do use some of the best tailoring
in the world for our actors, especially for Bond himself.
Above: Daniel Craig is the sixth 007
Sunspell made trendy tight T-shirts but normally
they would have made a much more conservative kind of garment.
And you know, working with companies like that and getting stuff
made for the film is really good fun.
How long does it take to prepare the costumes for a film
You never have enough time! (laughs). Actually, if
we had been filming in Britain we’d have been OK but because we
were filming out of the country it was a little pressurised.
We had about 12 to 14 weeks. But with that you are only servicing
the first few weeks of filming and you obviously go on doing
it as the film proceeds. So you hope by the first day of filming
you have the clothes for the first month under your belt and
things are still being made for a few weeks in and then you are
examining who is coming next and you probably don’t even
meet the actors for the next part until later. So it’s
an on going process.
Above: Eva Green, Daniel Craig
and Caterina Murino in the Bahamas
How many multiples of a costume do you need? For example when
Daniel is playing poker at the Casino, how many suits would
He’s in evening wear for that scene. So we would have
something like 25 suits for that scene because there’s
Bond at the table and he always has to be immaculate and you
have to have about five (suits) to inter change for that – no
creases in the bum and all that sort of stuff. (laughs). And
then there’s a huge fight sequences where he’s falling
down the stairs. And then he gets kidnapped and driven away into
the night and taken to be tortured and he has his clothes cut
off before he gets tortured. So there are about 25 suits that
are for him and his different stunt doubles.
And presumably these suits are at various stages of distress
to reflect the scene that Daniel is shooting?
some distressed, some fire proofed. But that is what you do with
them and sometimes you have them made
in different ways – sometimes you have them made bigger
so that it can go over a wet suit for instance. And that’s
how it goes on, really. And that applies to any garment that
he wears. And that applies to any garment that he wears. Like
the chase at the beginning (of the film) where he wears a shirt,
which I designed and had made, and those linen pants. There were
something like 40 shirts and 40 pairs of trousers. And for something
like the cricket scene, where he goes to the cricket pavilion
and he kills a guy in the shower, even though it’s only
a few seconds in the film, there were about 30 versions of that
To ask the obvious question, why so many suits?
has to be that way when you think about it, you can’t ask the same people to wear the same clothes. People
won’t do it anymore whereas once they probably did - but
not now. Every stunt person that is involved and Daniel has to
have five or more suits so you very soon end up with 25 or 30.
This was Daniel’s first experience of plunging into
the extraordinary world that is Bond. How did he take to it?
Wonderfully well. He just shut off everything and got on with
it, really. He’s a proper actor, that’s the thing,
he’s a really, really good actor and I think he inhabited
the part the way he would any other. I think he’s great but
he’s definitely not like any other Bond.
Above: Bond was given a classic look
But that’s the point, presumably, he has
to be his own Bond..
Absolutely that’s the point. I personally
think he is very sexy. He is more my sort of guy than
a lot of Bonds would be. And I think he makes a fantastic
Does Daniel’s looks – the blond hair
and those piercing blue eyes – affect the clothes
you put him in?
Yes, it does. It made me use mostly blue, to be
honest. Nearly everything he has got is navy blue, pale
blue, grey, mid grey and black. But then I almost never
use colour on Bond because colour dates everything. So
it’s mainly blue and grey and black and white.
What are you trying to achieve with his look?
Well we want him to look contemporary but classic,
too. These films last a long, long time and people look
back at them and so you are trying to create a look that
won’t date very quickly. I mean, if you look back
at some of the Roger Moore films, for instance, they do
look very seventies. There’s one where he’s
wearing the white safari suit and it does date them. We’re
trying to go for a look that won’t be dated. So whilst
we want Daniel in clothes that look sharp and contemporary,
we also want him to have that classic Bond style and that
Tell me about the bathing trunks he wears. That image has
already been seen all over the world.
(laughs). Yes, that was
my idea! Because I knew that those bathing trunks were just about
to become really, really hot and
trendy and they have subsequently become that. And I knew that
he would look really sexy in them. And why should it always be
the girls in the bikinis! (laughs)
And it could become as iconic as Ursula Andress coming
out of the sea in her bikini in Dr No…
I meant it to be like that. It’s a joke between all
of us that there is often someone coming out of the sea in a
Bond film and I said ‘well, if someone is coming out of
the sea, they have to look as sexy as Ursula Andress..’ And
he was every bit as sexy in that scene as the girls ever are.
And he 100 per cent went along with that. In fact, I took loads
of different shapes to show him before we had those made and
we came down clearly in favour of that shape.
And he’s clearly in great physical condition and trained
hard for that role. And if you are going to wear a pair of shorts
in a Bond movie you’d better look good.
That’s what we said. It’s like
the girls dieting themselves insane. But if you know, which we
all know, that all these photographs will still be around in
50 years time you’ve got to do it, you’ve got to
really go for it. It’s like when we did Halle Berry in
the orange bikini (Die Another Day) it was like ‘this is
going to be the alternative to Ursula Andress..’ and they
will be looking at those images for a long, long time. And people
laugh when I say this, but I know that when a journalist goes
into a file to look for something to illustrate any point – like
holidays in the Caribbean, the colour orange, anything, it just
goes on and on.
Part of what you have to do is pick clothes that are going
be coming into style say a year or so from when you first start
looking. How do you do that?
I talk to the manufacturers and I
talk to the style people and see what it is they are producing
for their next collections.
It’s the same with the women’s wear, we go and see
them and see what samples they’ve got and what they are
going to be making. Often with designers like Versace and Dolce & Gabbana,
they were willing to make me things in different colours out
of their own collections because they knew they would get big
exposure just about the time when their own clothes are out.
It’s fantastic for them. It’s the same process for
the men because you can persuade designers to do things for you.
Above: Daniel Craig sporting
the $4000 Armani leather jacket
Can you give me an example?
Well, there’s a leather jacket that Daniel wears in
the film. That jacket was $4,000 when I saw it in Los Angeles
and I showed it to him and we all agreed it had to be in. And
so I talked to Armani and they said ‘yes, yes, OK, we’ll
make it for you..’ and I thought ‘oh no, we’ll
never be able to afford this..’ and I warned everybody
and said ‘look,, it’s this really iconic jacket but
it cost $4,000…’ and we needed like a huge number,
probably 25 – you can see how the budget goes up. But do
you know that they made them for me in the factory and they only
charged me something like 400 euros each. So things like that
are really great. The good thing for me is that the people who
make the Bond films, Michael (Wilson) and Barbara (Broccoli),
are very, very supportive.
Above: Eva Green as Vesper Lynd
What was the look you were going for with Eva Green?
Her clothes were Versace, very up to date. She’s
stunning and a very, very nice person. I haven’t
seen the finished film yet but I know that she is going
to be marvellous.
This is the question you get asked all the time I’m
sure, but what happens to all the clothes when the film
Well on this one all the clothes were kept. Obviously
Daniel has the pick of anything he wants. But often an
actor like him wouldn’t really want to wear the clothes
he has worn in the part; some do, but not Daniel so much.
The girls can have things but mostly it’s gone into
the archives. Most films are not the same but on Bond they
have this archive and one day I’m sure there will
be this enormous exhibition of all these clothes.
But couldn’t you re use some of those lovely
No, I wouldn’t because then someone would say ‘oh
that’s the suit he wore in such and such..’ (laughs).
Produced by Michael G. Wilson and Barbara
Broccoli (Eon Productions) and directed by Martin Campbell,
CASINO ROYALE was released on November 16, 2006
in the UK. Principal photography started on
January 30th 2006, with locations in the UK, Czech Republic
(Prague), Italy, and the Bahamas. It is British actor
Daniel Craig’s first outing as James Bond. He is the
sixth actor to play the 007 role in the franchise.
The film also stars Judi Dench, Eva Green, Mads
Mikkelsen, Jeffrey Wright, Giancarlo Giannini, Caterina Murino,
Simon Abkarian, Tobias Menzies, Ivana Milicevic, Clemens Schik,
Ludger Pistor, Claudio Santamaria and Isaach de Bankole.
Thanks to Sony Pictures Entertainment