Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice costume designer Michael Wilkinson, spoke exclusively to People’s Choice during his panel held at the Las Vegas Convention Center this past weekend, where he talked on his design ideas and choices for Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman’s costumes for the film.
What did you enjoy about tackling the wardrobes for Batman v Superman?
Michael Wilkinson: There’s nothing I like more than a challenge. I love to get outside my comfort zone and go to new creative places. Designing the costumes for Batman v Superman really allowed me to do this. It was an incredible 18 month experience with a costume department that at times swelled to 75 people. It is rare to have the opportunity to explore the visual world of a film in such depth, and I was accompanied on this journey by the world’s best costume experts. It’s a chapter of my life that I will never forget.
What sort of research went into creating Batman and Wonder Woman’s looks?
Wilkinson: To get ready to design the costumes for Batman v Superman, I really did my homework. I immersed myself in the long histories of these iconic characters — Superman [Henry Cavill], Batman [Ben Affleck], and Wonder Woman [Gal Gadot]— I studied how they have been portrayed over the last 75 years on film, on TV, in comic books, graphic novels and video games. I studied what they mean to people, what they stand for, why they are important. I started an exhaustive search for new materials and technologies — original ways of portraying these characters that would be unlike anything audiences have seen before. I wanted the costumes to help make the characters inspirational and relevant to modern audiences.
How are this film’s costumes different than what we’ve seen in previous films?
We tweaked the Superman suit only slightly from our suit from Man of Steel. We streamlined plus sharpened the details of the costume a little to suit the more earthly (less alien) context of this film. The batsuit is a complete 180 degree turn from the previous film incarnations — our Batman’s power comes from his incredible physical strength and fighting skills, not from armor. The director Zack Snyder wanted him to look as much like the comic book version as possible — to be respectful to the original source. As for the Wonder Woman suit, well she has never been seen in a film before, so there was nothing to compare it to! There is of course the costume from the TV show. Zack wanted our character to be a fierce and intimidating warrior — gritty, battle-scarred and immortal.
Should fans look out for anything in particular when it comes to the costumes?
Zack had a great idea to have some kryptonian script subliminally included in the details of the suit, so we made that happen. There is ancient Greek script on Wonder Woman’s weapons too. My favorite details of the batsuit are the brass knuckles on the gloves.
What was Ben Affleck like at his first fitting? How did he react to the suit?
From the moment Ben had the suit on in the first fitting he was hooked. He liked the way it made him feel – powerful and intimidating.
To read the full interview head over to PeoplesChoice.com.