The costume continuity polaroids displayed in the exhibition next to the dress beautifully demonstrate how costumes go hand in hand in the creation of film still portraits, enabling a process of transformation of actor into character.
Nicole Kidman admitted in a publicity interview after the film’s release in 2001, ‘As I stepped into that character I was able to do it … as soon as I became Satine it was much easier, I put on the top hat and the costumes and the heels … I would lose my inhibitions.'
Catherine Martin has said the whole reason she went into fashion design was that designing clothes for the cinema ‘is to create a whole world within that context and that is what is so exciting’.
While she was initially daunted by the level of complexity required for the film, she rose to the challenge and won the Academy Award for best costume design.
With Angus Strathie, she successfully created an extravagant Bollywood-inspired tribute to the Moulin Rouge through sequins, satin, feathers, beading and silk.