Interview: Alice Through the Looking Glass Costume Designer Colleen Atwood

Earlier last month I joined Disney and famed designer Colleen Atwood for tea and a chance to talk about her work on Alice Through the Looking Glass, which has recently been released to DVD and Blu-Ray! I’ve been a fan of her work for a while, she has such an inspiring story and has designed for some of my most favorite movies including Edward Scissorhands, Little Women, Planet of the Apes (2001 movie), Big Fish, Memoirs of a Geisha, Into the Woods, The Huntsman movies, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, and of course both of the Alice in Wonderland films.

img_3763colleen-atwood-nyc

She’s so lovely in person, and I was so thrilled that I was able to, along with other bloggers and press, ask her a few questions.

Q: Are there any secret locations or places where you find inspiration?

Colleen Atwood: Well I find them everywhere, like fabric stores – sometimes I see a piece of fabric that’s great and I go “oh! That could be this!”. I get ideas from all over the place basically. There’s a great flea market in France, in Paris, that I go to in the north of Paris and it’s always great for inspiration for bits and pieces that are interesting. So many movies are made in London – this movie is made in London -and London has Portobello Road [flea market]. Which, sometimes I don’t really have a purpose in mind, I just get up early on Saturday morning and go there when it first opens, before it gets crowded and wander around and find like – he has a lot of weird buttons on his costume and most of those are sourced there and you know, old hat pins, just weird stuff people have in trays in front of their stalls and it’s fun to just discover things that way.

Q: Any favorite flea markets in New York?

CA: You know in New York I like the – and I meditated on going down there this morning – the one on 26th street, it’s like a garage you walk through and I love wandering around there. And there’s the emporium there that has some great stuff so I usually visit there. And there’s a great lingerie place there that’s beautiful, upstairs, it’s quite expensive but she has great stuff. There’s a few places, sort of warehouse wholesale, that I’ve gone to in Brooklyn but they’re not as accessible to people who are just walking around and shopping.

colleen-speaking-to-press

Q: Time has a really distinct costume, what was your inspiration or thought process behind that?

CA: I wanted him to be, kind of feel like he was something to do with a clock without literally being a clock. And I also loved the sort of graphic aspect of the clock kind of towering over little Alice, luckily Sacha’s [Baron Cohen, who plays Time] already about 6’3”-6’4” so that helped that I didn’t get a short guy for the part. But I put him in really high platform boots for part of it, and then he has those long thin legs so we did long skinny legs and a poufy pant and the big shoulders to get him wider, sort of like a grandfather clock. And then we came up with an idea to get him even taller with using a tall hat on him like the bishop’s sort of medieval hat that he has, sort of like a Greek Orthodox style from way early in time. And in his fitting for that we had brown paper and we just kept putting it in different hat shapes and trying them on him and figuring out which one was the best for him and for Time, and we came up with that one and it was sort of maximum height. We had some that were taller but it was too much, it almost made him look shorter. In the movie you see on his hand he has a thing that has all these rings and stuff – that was a piece of metal mesh that I found in a flea market and then I found all these watches with convex lenses on them that stuck out so that they were like cabochon jewels, so we took those and made them into his hand piece to make it a sort of element of time. And the rest was all kinds of stuff, different materials. We had a long cape on him and then most of the time he wore the short cape because it made him look funnier with his skinny legs.

alicethroughthelookingglass-time

Q: Movement is such a big part of this film, you chose to use very different textures in the fabric. Was that something that you just felt, touched it, and knew that this would be a great dynamic on the screen?

CA: I’ve done a lot of digital films at this point and know kind of what the camera sees, and especially when you go darker than a medium ground, it’s really important to have a texture and almost like a surface that has a little shine to it that kicks back some light. Otherwise all you get is sort of a black shape, you don’t really get much depth. So I’ve learned to paint into costumes, and add layers, add stuff to them to give it more dimension that way it’ll work in a lower light situation. So I use that trick a lot on this movie and I like texture, I think it tricks the camera in a way that’s interesting because sometimes you can’t even perceive what it is but it gives you a feeling that’s nice and a little bit more interesting than if you had just used a fabric as it comes off the peg.

colleen-atwood-through-the-looking-glass-interview

Q: Obviously designing for a sequel is going to be a lot different than the first time, what was your approach when you were revisited these characters and kind of built of the way that you already had designed for them?

CA: I felt like it was nice, I felt like I knew them. I knew who they were as people so I felt like I could have a little more play with them. I had a couple more opportunities because we had the flashback for the girls, where they were there kind of their teenaged selves, and then each of them had been on a journey. My constant was, other than her flashback, was Mirana – the Anne Hathaway character – her costume sort of remained the same. But Alice, when we left Alice she was going off to see the world and she came back as a very rare thing, a sea captain as a woman, so I had the opportunity to take the beautiful uniforms of the period and make one for her. Then we had to create her Chinese look from her Chinese journey, and then re-visit something that perhaps the Hatter had made for her in her final costume with the balloon pants and the kind of whimsical blouse made out of strips of fabric. So I kind of took each character and sort of felt like I could go free with them, it was sort of like a totally new movie for me as a designer but with the people that I knew from before.

Q: Is there one character from the movie that stands out as being the most enjoyable to design?

CA: Well, when you get a movie like this they’re all fun! Because they’re all such different things. I mean I love Helena’s costume and her take on the character is so much fun, and it was great to get to do her armor which I really loved doing with the thorn heart chest piece, and the military braid hoop and the sort of deconstructed military madness that the Red Queen would come up with. Mia’s clothes were great; I mean they were like a really beautiful journey. I got to use embroidery and all sorts of techniques that I hadn’t used before on the Alice prequel.

Listen to the entire interview here!

Alice Through the Looking Glass released to DVD and Blu-Ray on October 18th, if you don’t own it yet then it would make a great gift this holiday season! Alice Through the Looking Glass is a spectacular adventure featuring the unforgettable characters from Lewis Carroll’s beloved stories in which Alice returns to the whimsical world of Underland and travels back in time to save the Mad Hatter.

attlg

Enter to win your own copy of Alice Through the Looking Glass right now – just leave me a comment about your favorite outfit in the movie, or if you haven’t seen it, is there anything you found interesting that Colleen revealed in her interview? Personally, I loved when she spoke about creating Time’s outfit – the amount of detail is really incredible! Leave an extra comment/entry if you RT this!

*Giveaway ends 11/23/16. US, 18+.

Behind-the-Scenes Look at P!nk’s Cover of “White Rabbit” for Disney’s Alice Through the Looking Glass

Alice Through the Looking Glass Poster

Have you any idea why a raven is like a writing desk? Disney has released a brand new Alice Through the Looking Glass poster and some pretty exciting behind-the-scenes footage of P!nk’s cover of “White Rabbit”! She will also be writing and recording an original song that will be heard in the movie, which is set to hit theaters this May!

Alice Through the Looking Glass returns Alice back to the world of Underland and back in time to try to save the Mad Hatter. Watch the extended trailer here:

Starring many of our favorite voices, Alice Through the Looking Glass reunites Johnny Depp, Anne Hathaway, Mia Wasikowska, Matt Lucas and Helena Bonham Carter and introduces new characters played by Rhys Ifans and Sacha Baron Cohen. Also back are the talented voices of Alan Rickman, Stephen Fry, Michael Sheen, Timothy Spall, Barbara Windsor and Paul Whitehouse, and they are joined by Toby Jones.

I cannot wait to see this movie, the 2010 Alice in Wonderland is one of my favorites!

Cinderella Trailer & Images!

Cinderella-Glass-Slipper-Movie

If I had to choose which Disney story was the most timeless, I’d have to say Cinderella is it. At least for me (and zillion of others out there). So you can bet I was pretty thrilled to see that Disney has gone ahead and re-made an old favorite. It’s not I think that Cinderella needed an update, so much as I think the audience needs a reminder of this classic, timeless, magical tale – and I for one can’t wait to see it!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Check out the recently released poster images & trailer below! Also, be sure to pick up Vogue’s December issue where you can see more pictures of cast by photographer Annie Leibovitz!

Cinderella opens in theaters March 15, 2015! “Like” the movie on Facebook and follow along on twitter with hashtag #Cinderella!

Create Your Own Fireworks with Uncle Milton’s Disney Fireworks Lightshow Launcher!

My favorite part about the 4th of July (besides the food, the fam, and celebrating ‘Merica) is the fireworks. Ever since I was a little girl I’ve loved them, and have plenty of fond memories watching them on TV as well as in person. So when the folks from Uncle Milton sent me the Disney Fireworks Lightshow Launcher I was pretty thrilled – I mean, I know it’s a toy meant for the kids, but who can resist two of the most entertaining things to watch (Disney and fireworks) when they’re shown together!

Disney, Fireworks, Show
This happened to be one of those rare reviews where I’m not the lonely only testing out a product. Everyone was excited to see and try this toy out themselves! It really is so much fun. The Lightshow Launcher features an on and off switch (yes! all toys should include this, says the person who has been terrorized by toys going off all hours of the night); and 8 built-in Disney fireworks images.

fireworks-show-disneyYou have to turn the red panel to move from slide to slide, but the image quality is surprisingly sharp. Another neat feature is that when you pull back the launcher and release the trigger, the fireworks actually go from being small to large – so they really do look like actual fireworks!

Disney-Lightshow-LauncherThe trigger is not at all hard to pull, which means that little hands and chubby fingers can work this toy and create their own fireworks show! My nephew loves Disney and fireworks too (a kid after my own heart), he’s in love with this toy and I know he can’t wait to “make my own show” with the Disney Fireworks Lightshow Launcher this summer!

For more information on the Disney Lightshow Launcher as well as the other fun toys from Uncle Milton, click here!

“Let It Go” of My FROZEN Eggo!

cbias-disclosure

I have a really close relationship with my sisters, especially with my baby sister, Jules. I take her out all the time and one of our favorite things to do together is go to the movies. Our favorite movie so far this year has been Disney’s FROZEN. We both love that FROZEN celebrates the special love and bond between sister’s. At her insistence, I’ve taken her to see FROZEN four times, and she still can’t get enough of it! I really love how she identifies with both Anna and Elsa, and she has been begging, to have the movie on DVD so she can watch it as often as she likes. Luckily for her, the FROZEN DVD will hit Walmart shelves on March 18th, right before her birthday, at a special reduced price of $14.96 – down from $16.96!

#FROZENFun #CollectiveBias #shopI recently swung by Walmart to pick up a few essentials for the FROZEN themed mini-bash I plan on throwing Jules for her birthday. I definitely plan on stopping by on the 18th to pick up the FROZEN DVD – which by the way, you can score a $5 off offer with the purchase of specially marked 24 count Eggo waffles – but I wanted to pick up part of Jules’ FROZEN birthday present as well as some Eggos to make a special FROZEN inspired treat!

Disney-FROZEN-Plush-Olaf

Lucky for me, I snagged the last plush Olaf! Olaf is Jules’ favorite – I can’t tell you how many times I’ve overheard her singing “In Summer” to herself! I must admit, I too know the lyrics by heart, to this song and every other one in FROZEN. I also picked up plenty of Eggos!

I’ve been eating Eggos my whole life and so has Jules, they’re her favorites so I decided to pull together a fun, healthy, FROZEN Eggo snack – I call them Elsa’s Eggos!

Piping-FROZEN-WafflesI’ve watched enough cooking shows to know that presentation is everything and I really wanted for Jules to see her favorite movie in this treat, so I used Sugar Free Cool Whip with two drops of blue food coloring to get that snowy effect. When you mix up the Cool Whip with the food dye you don’t want to overmix – just a few folds and your good to go! If you don’t want to use food dye, you can also mix in jam or jelly (1 tablespoon for every two cups of Cool Whip). You don’t need any fancy tools, just a plastic baggie. Snip of the end and pipe around your stack of Eggos.

I also added blueberries between each layer and made a little blueberry mountain on top – a healthy nod toward Elsa’s ice castle, and sprinkled coconut flakes for more of a FROZEN snow effect. I love it – the blueberries and coconut give a really tropical taste, and there’s nothing like having the bursting flavor of blueberry enveloped within warm homestyle Eggos!

Elsas-EggosElsas-FROZEN-Eggos

For extra fun you can pre-fill the bags and let your kids or party guests pipe their own FROZEN Eggo designs! I got a little carried away and made my Eggo interpretation of Olaf using light yogurt, fruit, sugar free cool whip, and coconut flakes.

FROZEN-Olaf-Waffle

I can’t wait to gift Jules the FROZEN DVD, Olaf plush (so she can give him plenty of warm hugs!), and treat her to some delicious Elsa’s Eggos – I’m certain it’ll be one of her most favorite birthdays yet! Don’t forget to pick up your FROZEN DVD at Walmart on March 18th, and pick up a box of specially marked Eggos (24 count) for additional savings!

Do You Want to Build a Snowman? Disney Frozen Collector’s Edition Giveaway!

Disney-Frozen-Giveaway.gif

I don’t know about you, but I’ve seen Frozen (Disney’s box-office hit) about five times already! I love that Disney brought us a great story about sisterly love – which I feel like is a relationship that really deserves to be celebrated! I have sister’s of my own and can totally relate with Anna and Elsa of Frozen – and who doesn’t love adorable snowman Olaf?! Jules (my kid sister) loves Frozen, I mean LOVES and I think it’s so great for her to see two truly admirable female characters. I could go on and on about the valuable lessons that can be picked up in Frozen (like, hello, when prince charming turns out to not be all he was knocked up to be? Gasp!), but really it’s just a heartwarming tale that Disney has outdone itself with! The soundtrack and animation are gorgeous and the storyline is equally inspiring.

I’ve included the trailer below for easy viewing, but if you haven’t had a chance to see Frozen yet – in which case, I hope I haven’t spoilt anything for you! – some amazing bloggers and I have gotten together to giveaway a Collector’s Edition BLU-RAY + DVD + Digital HD version of Frozen! Enter below – and good luck!

 Disney Frozen Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disney’s Exciting New Maleficent Trailer Features New Lana Del Ray Song!

Lana Del Ray’s reimagined rendition of classic Disney tune”Once Upon a Dream” is amazing! If you haven’t yet heard it click here – where it’s free on Google Play for a limited time, or watch the trailer below to hear parts of the song. It’s a more haunting and dark version – and hearing in the trailer has gotten me all sorts of excited to see the movie!

Disney’s trend of familiarizing the audience with some pretty infamous villain’s (Loki – The Avengers, Theodora – Oz The Great and Powerful), continues with Maleficent, starring Angelina Jolie. Maleficent tells the untold story of Sleeping Beauty‘s villain Maleficent, giving viewers a more complete picture of the classic tale. Starring Angelina Jolie as Maleficent, and Elle Fanning as Aurora,  I love the idea of seeing the untold story behind iconic characters and this one look’s like it’s going to be fantastic!

Lana Del Ray’s version of the fairytale tune will feature in Maleficent’s credits. Maleficent open’s in theaters on May 30th 2014!

Eye Found It! Disney & Wonder Forge’s Most Magical Game

reviewdisclaimer

I love Disney, and I have loved them ever since I was a little girl and was introduced to Disney princesses like Pocahontas, Jasmine, and Belle. However, my adoration wasn’t strictly reserved for Disney princesses – I also was a hardcore Winnie the Pooh lover. I had a stuffed Pooh bear that was my most favorite accessory! This holiday season, give your Disney fanatic the Disney Eye Found It! Hidden Picture Game from Wonder Forge – it feature’s everyone’s most favorite Disney characters and I promise, they’ll love it!

Eye Found It! Game Review

When I first looked at the game I thought that it would be sort of a competition between players to see who would get to Cinderella’s castle before the clock struck midnight. But actually, Wonder Forge and Disney really encourage team work with this game (although when we played it there was also a fair amount of competition too, haha!) and makes it possible that all the players can actually win.

Parts of the GameEye Found It! Board Game

The idea is is that everyone picks a player and on their turn spins the spinner. The arrow will land on one of four options – to move the clock forward either one hour or two hours, to advance a certain number of spaces indicated, or to search. If you spin search, you pick a card from the deck. Based on the color of the search wedge that you landed on (red or blue) you choose that color side of the card to use. Then you start the timer and ALL the players (teamwork!) help to look for the object shown on the card. Each time you find a hidden object, you’d place a little mouse marker on the object (to keep track) and when the sands in the hourglass timer run out you count up your markers and everyone advances that many spaces. The idea is that you make it to Cinderella’s castle before midnight – if you do, then you’re a winner! Make sense?

Disney's Eye Found It! from Wonderforge

For example if the card reads “barrels” then you would look for as many barrels in all the Disney scenes as you can find. Like their might be one in One Hundred Acre Wood, and one in the little town from Beauty and the Beast.

What really blew me away was the gorgeous colors and details that went into creating this game! It really is amazing to look at – and perfect for those who love a good seek and find! The board includes 12 “Disney Realms”, and stretches out at 6 feet long!

Look at that detail!

Disney Eye Found It! by Wonderforge

If I didn’t own it already, I would definitely buy this as a Christmas present. If you have a Disney fan in your family (and who doesn’t?), or want to introduce someone to the wonderful world of Disney, then this magical game would be right up their alley! Of all the games I’ve seen this season, this is one of my favorites, which is why I included it in The NYC Talon’s 2013 Holiday Gift Guide!

Be sure to stay tuned for more fun gift idea for everyone on your list, as well as a chance to win some fabulous gifts!

New Trailer for Thor: The Dark World!

You all know that I’m pretty darn excited for the next Thor movie. Like I will be there, front of the line opening day. Me and my whole family. For real. On that note, if you’re as Thor-happy as I am you’ll want to bookmark (share, tweet, pin?) this post because there are a ton of exclusive images from Walt Disney & Marvel Studios that you’ll want to look at over and over again!

Having debuted as a part of Geek Week’s Super Wednesday here’s the new Thor: The Dark World trailer:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

Get a Hop on Easter Baskets with Wonderforge! And it’s also a Giveaway!

Every year, after Church on Easter Sunday, my family has our yearly Easter egg hunt and Easter basket handout. We’re a very competitive bunch and our Easter egg hunt is like the Laura Ashley equivalent of The Hunger Games. The same competitiveness rings true through any game we’re playing – our most favorite game right now is the Nickelodeon™ Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles™ Clash Alley™ Strategy Board Game.

wonderforge1
I grew up with TMNT – so I was super excited to get my hands on this game! Although, Shawn (my little brother), didn’t grow up with the Ninja Turtles, he was absolutely in love with this strategy game. On a mission to rescue April, you battle mutants Kraang and Shredder – you get get to recover objects and even pick up pizza! But our favorite part of this game was the 3D aspect – it adds another “layer of fun” as Shawn put it.

wonderforge4
It comes unattached – so you have to set it up. I’m hopeless when it comes to putting things together, but even I managed this one really well (I’m proud to say). The object of the game is to be the first turtle to complete your mission by collection your mission tile and returning to your corner home space. You do this by rolling the three dice which tell you how much you can run, climb, and leap, and you can do those in any order with the goal being to get your mission tile. It’s so fun, and super easy to understand! We played a LOT of rounds, it’s pretty addictive, it’s like a fun combination of action, puzzle, and board game because you have to figure out what moves will work best for you. Very cool!

wonderforge2
Another game, perfect for your younger bunnies, is the Disney Easter Matching Game! It’s so adorable, and a perfect game for young Disney fans. Favorite Disney characters are featured including Mickey (naturally), Donald, Tinker Bell, Minnie Mouse, Belle, Daisy duck, Piglet, Phineas and Pherb, the green aliens from Toy Story, Winnie the Pooh, Buzz and Woody, and more!
I’m gifting this one this Easter to my neice – who absolutely loves Disney! I love how this match game develops the memory of little ones; and thanks to Wonderforge is made out of recycled materials for a smaller footprint on our environment!

wonderforge3
The kind folks at Wonderforge are offering one lucky winner both the Nickelodeon™ Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles™ Clash Alley™ Strategy Board Game and the Disney Easter Matching Game!

To Enter Please Leave One Comment Per Entry

Mandatory
1. Follow Wonderforge on twitter

2. Follow The NYC Talon on twitter

Optional
1. All of Wonderforge’s facebook followers get an extra entry! If you don’t follow Wonderforge on facebook yet, you can do so here!

2. Follow The NYC Talon on Pinterest

3. Retweet this tweet!

*Wonderforge provided me with product samples in order to facilitate a review. However, all opinions expressed here are my own. Giveaway open to 18+, US only. Starts 3/18 and closes on 3/26 at midnight EST.