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Stephanie Maslansky

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					Stephanie Maslansky Page 1 Panel: …kind of being a modern day Rat Packer, and, you know, obviously, a part of that [speaks to] the vintage clothes that he ended up wearing. So, I guess, how do you use the clothes to kind of help shape that character who he is, or he wants us to think he is at least? Well, truth be told, I did not do the pilot. I will have done every episode after the pilot. So, I’m not going to take credit for the pilot. I think the pilot was done really well by—and the designer for the pilot was Kat Thomas, a really good designer, New York designer. And I feel as though I took off from what she sort of established in the pilot having had a conversation with the writer, with the producer, the creator of the show, Jeff Eastin, what his vision was of this character. And he envisioned this character, Matt, to be a bit of a chameleon, to have a strong sense of [stuff], also to have a high level of desirability to reach another level of society, and to appear to have more than he did. Obviously, he was a con artist. He was a criminal. And he is a master of disguise to some degree. So, what’s evolving with the show is his ability to disguise himself utilizing clothing and becoming a wealthy gallery owner, or a very eccentric—there’s just a variety—he is taking on a variety of disguises, which enable him to further the plots of the show. Panel: Okay. And since we’ve only just seen the pilot, so, he does go undercover in terms that he really has to change his persona in outfits based on that? Exactly. And, generally speaking, when he goes undercover, whoever he’s playing, that character does require a really strong terrific look. And, initially, the look was based on, and continues to be based on, the silhouette that was popular during the Rat Pack era, during the late fifties, early sixties, which is a very slim silhouette with very fitted jackets, and slim trousers, slim ties. It’s interesting sometimes just looking at—but what we’ve done is we’ve also made it a little bit more contemporary, because if you go back and look at the true silhouette of the Rat Pack era, you’ll notice that the jackets are shorter, but they’re a bit boxier. You can actually see that in Mad Men, which is really true to the era. And the clothes are terrific. But the colors are different. The silhouette is slightly different. And what we’ve done is we’ve taken that style and made it a bit more contemporary. But one thing that—one direction that this show is going, which I feel that I’ve picked up this notion and kind of run with it, is I’m keeping the look of all of the characters a bit more elegant, a bit more sophisticated than people really are these days in New York City.

Stephanie:

Stephanie:

Stephanie Maslansky Page 2 I don’t know. It was not necessarily something that we all specifically agreed upon, but it’s where we’ve gone with it, and everybody seems to feel that that’s the right direction. And I’m really happy with it. And it’s a lot of fun for me because I not only—I combine both vintage looks with contemporary looks, and I take vintage clothing and tailor it to fit Matt in a specific way. Peter, who’s the FBI agent, and always wears the same Brooks Brothers suit, he has a very specific look that—also, he has a very slim silhouette and a very sort of elegant silhouette. But he, actually, confesses to the fact that he isn’t interested in clothes and always his character has been wearing the same suit forever. In the show, I choose the same style. Primarily, he wears Brooks Brothers. He also wears some Burberry—sort of very traditional classic clothing makers that I found. Paul Stuart as well. But then, again, we tailor to fit Tim’s physique and to fit the character. So, everybody has a very particular style for a very particular reason. Any other questions? Panel: With Elizabeth’s career as an event planner, they must be able to do some fun parties, society, you know, the really dressy--? Yeah, definitely. I’m very happy that they decided to make her into an event planner because that really gives us an opportunity to make her a little bit more cutting edge. And it’s sort of interesting. It also gives the relationship between Peter and Elizabeth sort of an interesting edge because they’re, obviously--. He always wears the same suit too. Yeah, and she’s a little bit—she’s quite fashionable and more sophisticated and more elegant. And we’ve also worked to find the proper silhouette for her. And her clothes are also quite fitted, quite—they’re sexy. The colors are very—the whole—I would say the tone of the colors that we’re using in this show, the pallet is primarily cool—blues, grays, with pops of strong jewel-tone colors. And that’s another difference between our show, this contemporary show, and the vintage era Rat Pack, which was more warm browns and oranges and peaches, more earth tones. So, that’s another way that we’ve made that particular look a little bit more contemporary. Panel: Do you ever find that you start dressing a character based on the actor I mean, at all? Because Willie had said that his clothes have changed kind of a little bit, they’ve become more stylish. Sometimes if you see people who have—well, because of an iconic role, when they’re off camera, you’ll find that they dress

Stephanie:

Panel: Stephanie:

Stephanie Maslansky Page 3 very similarly to that role. I mean so does the actor who’s playing the character influence what you put them in? Stephanie: Oh, absolutely, particularly in something dramatic like this. Even when I used to do television commercial work, I’d always like to get the actor involved, because I think that they can bring a lot to the role. They certainly—all people have their own opinions about how they dress, and how they like to dress. And certainly they have ideas about their character, and where it’s going, and how they want to shape it. And I think in Willie’s case, it was interesting because I mean I certainly—before I met him, I only had Sarah Jessica Parker’s best gay friend in Sex in the City in my mind. And he turned out to be an eccentric guy no doubt, but very different from that character, or different enough so that I could finally take that image out of my head when I started to think about the role. Panel: Stephanie: The pink shirts and the polka dot tie [indiscernible]. And we definitely did not want that to influence how he looked. We wanted to stay away from that particular character. So, there’s been a lot of mystery involved surrounding his character. He sort of seems to be a person. He’s Neal’s friend. We believe he—of course, he has a criminal past. He seems to be rather brilliant and eccentric just like Neal. He is quirky but he also needs to disappear. So, I wanted, in his case, I wanted the colors of his clothing, or the tones of his clothing, to be not bright at all, but I wanted to use texture and shape and specific items, accessories, to give his look nuance and character and eccentricity. So you saw—he was dressed sort classically today. I’m glad that he was wearing what he was wearing when he came in here because he often wears a scarf. We have bracelets that he actually helped design. And he gave us ideas about what he actually wanted. And we found them or made them. You know, we want his character to look like he’s not homeless, although he might be. And he probably doesn’t really pay anything for his clothes. He may be just finding them, but he’s very particular about what he winds up keeping. He’ll go through a pile of clothes he finds on the street and only keep one or two shirts out of 14 shirts that he finds on the street, that sort of thing. So, we wanted him to look like—we want his character to look effortless, not strained in how he looks, really natural. But at the same, we want him to have sort of an air of mystery around him. Panel: Did you custom design any of the outfits that Neal will be wearing in the show?

Stephanie Maslansky Page 4 Stephanie: So far, I haven’t had anything made from the ground up. However, I am starting to have a few shirts made because I’m sort of running out of—we use specific— there are some—I use some pretty specific designers for Neal in particular. And I’ll tell you those if you’re interested. Yeah. We started out using a lot of Paul Smith and a lot of Varvatos. And we’ve now added Thomas Pink, and they’ve been wonderful. We’re using a lot of Thomas Pink. We also use some Calvin Klein. And then, of course, we use vintage clothes as well. And everything, as I said, is tailored even more than Paul Smith tailors. So, I won’t say I’ve custom made anything, but we customize everything. And the same with Peter, and the same with Neal, everything gets altered in a certain way—shortened, lengthened, taken in, let out, lowered, risen. We do a lot of customizing of clothes that we have found so far. And perhaps as time wears on and there’s season two, three, four, five—God willing, we have more time in prep, I’ll be happy to design their clothes. But so far, I’ve been very fortunate to find really great designers out there who already have great pieces that we can then tailor into the individual items for those actors. Anything else? Panel: Panel: Panel: Panel: Stephanie: Panel: Anybody else? Cool! Stephanie, thank you so much. Thanks so much. My pleasure. Thank you very much.

Panel: Stephanie:


				
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posted:10/3/2009
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Description: Various Transcripts from the set of the TV Show White Collar