Category: Formalwear

Pal Joey: Sinatra’s Gray Dinner Jacket

Frank Sinatra as Joey Evans in Pal Joey (1957)

Frank Sinatra as Joey Evans in Pal Joey (1957)

Vitals

Frank Sinatra as Joey Evans, womanizing nightclub singer

San Francisco, Spring 1957

Film: Pal Joey
Release Date: October 25, 1957
Director: George Sidney
Costume Designer: Jean Louis

Background

Today marks the birth of Frank Sinatra, the Chairman of the Board himself, born on December 12, 1915, in Hoboken. This son of tenement-dwelling Italian immigrants grew to be one of the most influential, best-selling music artists in history.

Sixty years ago, Sinatra was rising as one of the biggest stars in the world when he starred as the titular Pal Joey, a performance that earned him a Golden Globe award. Originally a stage musical starring Gene Kelly as the singing and dancing anti-hero, Pal Joey was reconfigured for the screen with the character more reflective of Sinatra’s own charming yet mischievous “nice guy” persona. Continue reading

Bond Style: Lazenby’s Black Tie and Aston Martin

George Lazenby as James Bond in On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969)

George Lazenby as James Bond in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969)

Vitals

George Lazenby as James Bond, smooth British secret agent

Estoril, Portugal, September 1969

Film: On Her Majesty’s Secret Service
Release Date: December 18, 1969
Director: Peter R. Hunt
Tailor: Dimi Major
Costume Designer: Marjory Cornelius

Background

On the 00-7th of December, this Car Week post is focused on James Bond’s sole Christmastime adventure, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service starring George Lazenby as the suave secret agent.

The film opens with a scene straight out of the source novel as a competitive Bond engages in a playful “race” against a beautiful young woman speeding toward the beach in her convertible. Continue reading

Dial M for Murder

Ray Milland, Robert Cummings, and John Williams in Dial M for Murder (1954)

Ray Milland, Robert Cummings, and John Williams in Dial M for Murder (1954)

Vitals

  • Ray Milland as Tony Wendice, conniving former tennis pro
  • Robert Cummings as Mark Halliday, romantic American crime writer
  • Anthony Dawson as C.A. Swann, opportunistic con man
  • John Williams as Chief Inspector Hubbard, clever Scotland Yard detective

London, Fall 1953 and Spring 1954

Film: Dial M for Murder
Release Date: May 29, 1954
Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Wardrobe Credits: Moss Mabry & Jack Delaney

WARNING! Spoilers ahead! Continue reading

The Spy Who Loved Me: Roger Moore’s Double-Breasted Dinner Jacket

Roger Moore as James Bond with Barbara Bach in The Spy Who Loved Me (1977)

Roger Moore as James Bond with Barbara Bach in The Spy Who Loved Me (1977)

Vitals

Roger Moore as James Bond, suave and sophisticated British MI6 agent

Cairo, Egypt, August 1977

Film: The Spy Who Loved Me
Release Date: July 7, 1977
Director: Lewis Gilbert
Wardrobe Supervisor: Rosemary Burrows
Tailor: Angelo Vitucci

Background

A man in a sharply tailored tuxedo meets a beautiful woman over martinis in an exotic cocktail lounge. Hours later, he finds himself – Walther PPK in hand – stalking a seemingly unstoppable metal-mouthed killer through the Egyptian pyramids. This quintessential James Bond moment is one of many iconic scenes in Roger Moore’s third 007 outing, The Spy Who Loved Me, and it’s how I remember him on his first birthday since his passing last May at the age of 89. Continue reading

The Last Tycoon: Monroe Stahr’s Tuxedo

Matt Bomer as Monroe Stahr on The Last Tycoon (Episode 9: "Oscar, Oscar, Oscar.")

Matt Bomer as Monroe Stahr on The Last Tycoon (Episode 9: “Oscar, Oscar, Oscar.”)

Vitals

Matt Bomer as Monroe Stahr, charming studio wunderkind

Hollywood, August 1936 through February 1937

Series: The Last Tycoon
Episodes:
– “Pilot” (Episode 1, dir. Billy Ray)
– “Eine Kleine Reichmusik” (Episode 5, dir. Gwyneth Horder-Payton)
– “A Brady-American Christmas” (Episode 6, dir. Stacie Passon)
– “Oscar, Oscar, Oscar” (Episode 9, dir. Billy Ray)
Streaming Date: July 28, 2017
Developed By: Billy Ray
Costume Designer: Janie Bryant

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

Amazon recently announced the disappointing news that they are discontinuing production of The Last Tycoon, the second of its F. Scott Fitzgerald-inspired series to meet that fate following the cancellation of Z: The Beginning of Everything days earlier.

In its brief, nine-episode life, The Last Tycoon was true to its “golden age of Hollywood” roots with an emphasis on style rather than substance… but oh what style it was, and with strong performances to booth with Matt Bomer, Kelsey Grammer, Lily Collins, Rosemarie Dewitt, and others rounding out the talented cast of characters. Continue reading

Dean Martin Turns 100: Dino’s Iconic Tuxedo

Dean Martin on the set of The Dean Martin Show, circa 1965

Vitals

Dean Martin, smooth and multi-talented entertainer

Burbank, California, 1965 to 1974

Series: The Dean Martin Show
Air Dates: September 16, 1965 – April 5, 1974
Director: Greg Garrison
Tailor: Sy Devore

Background

On June 7, 1917, Dino Paul Crocetti was born in Steubenville, Ohio, to Angela and Gaetano Crocetti, the latter a barber from the Abruzzo region in Italy where much of my own family hails. One hundred years later, the world remembers him as Dean Martin, the charming crooner whose legendary career spanned half a century as a major headliner from nightclubs and casinos to movies and TV shows.

Effortlessly charismatic and unflappable, Dino brought his smooth star power to his popular comedy act with Jerry Lewis and later as a leader of the Rat Pack alongside Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr. Continue reading

Inglourious Basterds: Aldo Raine’s Ivory Dinner Jacket

Brad Pitt as Lt. Aldo Raine in Inglourious Basterds (2009)

Vitals

Brad Pitt as Lt. Aldo Raine, U.S. Army OSS officer and redneck leader of the “Inglourious Basterds”

Paris, June 1944

Film: Inglourious Basterds
Release Date: August 21, 2009
Director: Quentin Tarantino
Costume Designer: Anna B. Sheppard
Brad Pitt’s Evening Attire: Giorgio Armani

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

Inglourious Basterds kicks off a two-film spree in Tarantino’s filmography focused on rewriting history with violent vengeance. In this revisionist take on World War II, a band of Jewish-American military guerillas – think The Dirty Dozen meets The A-Team – is assigned the sole task of secretly but brutally fighting their way through occupied German territory, murdering any Nazi encountered in their wake. The two-year spree of these “inglourious basterds” who give the film its title ends up in a Paris movie theater on the eve of the D-Day invasion with an opportunity to take down the German high command, including Hitler himself, to end the war. Continue reading