Iconic ‘Fifth Element’ Bandage Costume
Iconic ‘Fifth Element’ Bandage Costume, Milla Jovovich got her break in a look scarce on fabric that turned out to be very influential. Unwrapping Milla Jovovich’s famous costume from ‘The Fifth Element’, Time for sci-fi “fanboys” and action-heroine worshipers to pay some respect. Whatever you might think of “Resident Evil” (“Retribution,” the fifth in the series, comes out September 14) the franchise has made actress Milla Jovovich today’s reigning action star – a destiny that can be traced back 15 years to “The Fifth Element.” The breakout role of Leeloo didn’t just give her action chops and solidify her woman-as-supreme-savior legacy. That costume has become a fanboy favorite and sci-fi trope to honor, from cosplay tributes to movies like “Run Lola Run” and “Prometheus,” which served up a double helping with Noomi Rapace and Charlize Theron in the ACE-Bandage ensemble.
When high fashion meets science fiction
Gaultier, whose onscreen success with the female form includes “The Cook, the Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover” and “The Skin I’m In,” impressed Besson with his work on Madonna’s Blonde Ambition tour. (Actually, you can thank Gaultier’s grandma for that look; she encouraged his fashion artwork by showing him her pink satin corset. Yes, you can be vaguely disturbed.)
The director, though, had definite ideas on how “The Fifth Element” universe should look, given that he had worked on his script since he was a teen – and pre-”Star Wars,” to boot. Saturated colors – not that dark, rain-drenched foreboding typical of classics like “Blade Runner” – were the working orders, and Gaultier’s 954 costumes more than measured up. Sci-fi became truly fabulous with Chris Tucker’s RuPaulian flamboyance, Bruce Willis’s orange-and-black rubberized masculinity, and Gary Oldman’s villainous cowlick extraordinaire. (Besson’s verbal sketch of the evil Zorg for Gaultier: “dandy, nouveau riche, Hitler.”)