Pierce Brosnan as Andy Osnard, sleazy and shrewd MI6 agent
Panama City, Fall 1999
Film: The Tailor of Panama
Release Date: March 30, 2001
Director: John Boorman
Costume Designer: Maeve Paterson
Pierce Brosnan had a reputation for playing smooth, dapper characters like Remington Steele, Thomas Crown, and – of course – James Bond, making it all the more entertaining when he traded in that image to play unapologetic cad Andy Osnard in John Boorman’s 2001 adaptation of John le Carré’s spy novel The Tailor of Panama.
Viewers at the time may have thought “Pierce Brosnan playing a British spy in an exotic setting? Won’t that just be James Bond?” John le Carré readers who were familiar with the book knew the answer was a resounding “Hell, no!”
What’d He Wear?
Andy Osnard first arrives in Harry Pendel’s shop wearing an unstructured sports jacket in a black and cream houndstooth check. This loose-fitting sack coat is heavily padded in the shoulders and hangs off of Brosnan’s frame for a raggy and relaxed appearance, indicating Osnard’s off-the-rack style that provides a clear contrast against Brosnan’s then-tenure as the sophisticated James Bond. (He later wears a tan linen-blend suit that could be considered more of a sartorial success, but still hardly something worthy enough to be found in 007’s closet.)
Osnard’s jacket has a welted breast pocket with sporty patch pockets on the hips. The cuffs are plain with no buttons or break. There is a single vent in the back. The narrow notch lapels end high on the jacket to accommodate the four light brown urea buttons on the single-breasted front. There is a buttonhole through the left lapel.
Osnard wears three different shirts with this jacket, always untucked for a lazy appearance that fits the messy, relaxed look of his jacket. The first, worn upon his arrival at Harry’s shop and when out for drinks that night, is a pale yellow short-sleeve shirt in a soft linen-silk blend with a spread collar, front placket, and large breast pocket.
Osnard has a purple short-sleeve shirt, likely from the same manufacturer of the yellow shirt, also in a soft linen-silk fabric with a spread collar, front placket, breast pocket, and box pleat down the center of his back. He wears this for his plane ride to Panama, dancing with Francesca Deana, and his late meeting with Harry. (As he wears it on the plane, it could technically be considered the first shirt seen with this jacket, mais n’enculons pas des mouches.)
During some of his late night adventures in espioange, Osnard wears a stylish silky take on a khaki bush shirt with short set-in sleeves, two chest pockets with button-down flaps, and a concealed fly placket. This shirt also appears to be a linen-silk blend.
Harry Pendel: And do we dress right or left, sir? Most of my gentlemen favour left these days, don’t think it’s political.
Andy Osnard: Never know where the bloody thing is. Bobs about like a wind-sock.
Due to the full cut of his trousers, it’s no wonder why Andy Osnard’s “thing” bobs around so frequently. Osnard’s trousers are light khaki in a luxurious fabric that is likely silk or another linen-silk blend. Since he always wears his shirts untucked, covering his waistband, it has to be assumed that they have a flat front and belt loops, through which he would wear the same brown leather belt with the gold single-claw buckle that he wore with his tan suit (and which would, here, also match his shoes.) He may wear two pairs of similar trousers, as the pair in Harry’s shop clearly have plain-hemmed bottoms with a full break and the pair he wears in his hotel room almost certainly have cuffs.
Osnard’s shoes are, in my opinion, the snazziest part of the outfit. They are brown leather monk strap loafers with a plain toe and a large brass buckle on the outside of each shoe, possibly the same Church’s “Westbury” in walnut that Brosnan also wore that year in The World is Not Enough (as seen at Iconic Alternatives). He wears them with light cream dress socks that nicely continue the leg line of his trousers and also provide more comfort in the warm Panamanian climate than dark socks would.
Osnard wears a gold monogrammed signet ring on his left pinky.
His wristwatch, as identified by Teeritz, is likely an Omega DeVille Co-Axial from the late ’90s with a round stainless case, white dial, and black leather strap fastening it to Osnard’s left wrist. A surprisingly tasteful choice for this agent, although it’s more likely due to Pierce Brosnan’s role as an Omega ambassador than a reflection of something that Osnard would realistically wear.
Finally, Osnard wears the same pair of gunmetal-framed Fossil sunglasses throughout The Tailor of Panama. They have dark lenses and wide metal arms with black rubber temples.
How to Get the Look
Though not the most fashionable items, Andy Osnard’s loose and light clothing would be comfortable in Panama’s warm weather, although it likely would have made an experienced tailor like Harry Pendel cringe every time he looked at him.
- Black-and-cream houndstooth check unstructured single-breasted 4-button sportcoat with short notch lapels, welted breast pocket, patch hip pockets, plain cuffs, and single vent
- Pale yellow linen-silk short-sleeve shirt with spread collar, front placket, breast pocket, and center back box pleat
- Light khaki linen-silk flat front trousers with belt loops, slanted side pockets, plain-hemmed bottoms
- Brown leather belt with gold single-claw buckle
- Brown leather monk loafers with large brass buckles
- Light cream dress socks
- Stainless wristwatch with a round white face on a black leather strap (likely an Omega DeVille Co-Axial)
- Gold monogrammed signet ring, worn on left pinky
- Fossil gunmetal-framed sunglasses with dark lenses, wide arms, and black rubber temples
Do Yourself a Favor and…
There’s two ways we can deal with this one, old girl. Sweat it out for six months, then fall into each other’s arms. “Darling, why didn’t we ever do this before?” Method B, the preferred one… full-on affair, now. Observing tight security all ’round. See how we like it. If we don’t, chuck it in. No one’s the wiser.