Ryan Gosling and the “Drive” bomber jacket.
Photo: Courtesy of FilmDistrict
When you watch a movie like Drive, it’s easy to admire director Nicolas Winding Refn’s polished artistic vision or the fine acting (and the fiiiiiiine face/bod/everything) of Ryan Gosling. But we’d like to call your attention to the work of costume designer Erin Benach, particularly the iconic white satin jacket which Ryan’s character, Driver, wears throughout the film. A recent interview with Benach revealed the gargantuan efforts behind its creation (clearly, you do not just buy a jacket like that off the rack). And whaddaya know, “special and awesome and unique” Ryan (Benach’s words, though we certainly agree) was totally involved in the process. “We discuss everything beforehand,” Benach, who has worked with Ryan before on Blue Valentine and Half Nelson, coos. Hmph.
For example, the shiny bomber, inspired by Ryan’s own Korean souvenir jacket from the 1950s (sigh, he’s hot and wears vintage), was constructed bit by bit, from the wool trim at the waist and wrists to the massive golden scorpion stitched on the back. Now, before you think your job is stressful, Benach went through 15 or 20 revisions before approving the final version ONE HOUR before shooting. She also had to deal with Drive’s director of photography, Newton Thomas Sigel, who wasn’t down for white satin: “Imagine a photographer’s face: ’Wait, every shot of our main actor is going to be in a bright white jacket?’ His fear was it would blow out the image. We worked with him to try and find different satins with sheens that would bounce less. Or bounce more.” So when you watch Drive, go on and show some love for the jacket. And guys everywhere, please know that should you wear the bomber (which might be available online soon, according to Benach!) as Ryan’s character on Halloween, we will fall in love with you.