Dior is on the cusp of agreeing to pay Jennifer Lawrence a rumored $15 to $20 million dollars to wear their clothes for the next three years. But while Jennifer Lawrence is an extremely well-paid professional wearer of clothes, it turns out she is very hard on them.
American Hustle‘s costume designer Michael Wilkinson, who is nominated for an Oscar for his work on the movie, told Vanity Fair that the actress dusted some of her costumes with Doritos powder.
Lawrence’s most famous look in the movie is definitely the low-cut metallic white jersey gown she wears to confront Amy Adams, who plays her husband’s mistress. Originally she was supposed to spill champagne on the dress, so Wilkinson had four of it made. Luckily the fabric was only $3.99 per yard. The champagne spill did not wind up happening, but they still had the spare dresses around.
“And I’m kind of glad we did,” Wilkinson said, “because Jennifer Lawrence is a very . . . let’s say . . . raw and intuitive young lady, and she’s not against eating Doritos and snack food in her costume. So we were glad that we had a couple [backups].”
I realize that this story is another charming example of Jennifer Lawrence’s “occasionally awkward everywoman who gives no fucks” persona–for which we love her deeply–but I am having theater flashbacks and white-knuckling the edge of my couch in horror .
I used to work in costumes, and about 30% of my first job out of undergrad involved chasing actors with dressing gowns and makeup shields (little fabric bags they were supposed to put over their heads before getting dressed to avoid staining their costumes with makeup), begging and pleading the actors to use them to protect their clothes. When on break, the actors of course liked to chill out, have a cigarette, drink some coffee, and order a pizza. That was great, but they were often in costume when that happened.
If the actors spilled, stained, or damaged a costume or made it smell like cigarette smoke, I was one of the people who was going to have to fix it, make a new one, or get yelled at by the theater bosses when they wanted to know why we were over budget because someone ruined an antique dress and we had to pay for it.
At least the American Hustle dress in question was not too expensive, at least in materials. (They still had to pay the cutters and stitchers who made it.) Lawrence is a charmingly laid-back actress and we love that about her, but as someone who used to sew costumes for a living, I can’t help but wish she’d be a little more careful with all the gorgeous ones she gets to wear.