Monday, 14 February 2011

Drama over costume collaboration

Like most young girls, Fashionista dreamt of becoming a ballerina, but for anyone who's seen Black Swan, the reality of a dancer's life is somewhat distant from those childhood ambitions. While Natalie Portman scooped the BAFTA for best actress at the weekend, it may be a relief that the film didn't win the "best costume" BAFTA given the spat that has broken out between the official costume designer Amy Westcott and the design duo RodarteThe Guardian reported that the film's nomination for best costume had left the Mulleavy sisters (the duo behind the Rodarte label) feeling snubbed - they were upset not to have been credited for their creation of a number of key looks used in the film.
Fashionista doubts that the row will overshadow the film's box office success, but it does serve as a good reminder that when designers engage in collaborations, they should agree in advance who will own the IP rights resulting from the work produced and agree the level of credit and acknowledgement they can expect, and get the position recorded in a written contract. Collaborations are only successful when both parties' reputations are enhanced by the partnership - the question is: will Rodarte's work on the film reap rewards in terms of new orders from their A/W 2011 collection?