Pad Man , which releases today, finds its inspiration in Arunachalam Muruganantham, whose story also made it to Twinkle Khanna’s book, The Legend of Lakshmi Prasad. Khanna also plays producer for the film, which stars her husband Akshay Kumar alongside Sonam Kapoor and Radhika Apte. Needless to say, the movie has created quite a stir even before its release, be it with the #PadManChallenge on Instagram or Twinkle Khanna’s meeting with Malala Yousafzai at the Oxford University during the promotions.
Sonam Kapoor’s deglamourised look to keep in tune with her character has also become another talking point of the film. Conceptualised by stylist and costume designer Theia Tekchandaney, who incidentally also worked with the actress in Neerja, 28 looks were created for Kapoor. Vogue speaks to Tekchandaney about what went on behind-the-scenes in the wardrobe department (also catch some unseen pictures of the actor from the movie in our slideshow below). What was the brief you received to style Sonam Kapoor for the Pad Man ?
Sonam’s character is a final year management student from Delhi, who graduates through the course of the film. She is also a tabla player. As per the script, these were the two defining characteristics that had to be kept in mind when planning her wardrobe. Other than that, director R Balki left the decision of charting her character’s look entirely up to me. What was the look you narrowed down on?
Since Sonam’s character in Pad Man is working at the grass root level in the movie, there needed to be a hint of conservatism in her ensembles, but we did not want it to be boring. So we chose an in-between path with her ensembles—we turned to Indian fabrics and designs but stayed away from typically traditional outfits like salwar kurtas.
She needed to be approachable as per the storyline, so we married comfort with practicality in all her outfits. For instance, we initially put her in sneakers, but realised that the process of taking them off every time she visited the villagers in their homes would become tedious for her character. So we then changed her footwear to basic leather chappals. Which designers did you collaborate with for the movie?
We worked with a host of designers rooted in an Indian sensibility, and had them custom-make styles they are really strong at. We then mix-and-matched these to create individualistic combinations, so that no look was by one designer head-to-toe. The entire pre-production process took two-and-a-half months.
Maku by Shantanu Das and Aneeth Arora of Péro allowed us to dip into their archives to choose the looks that worked best for us. Anavila customised linen kurta shirts with minimal detailing and stoles for the movie while Grassroot by Anita Dongre created shibori stoles and a beautiful chikan kurta. We used Eká’s winter collection for the sequence in the Unites States, though the scene did not make the final cut. Sanjay Garg designed an aqua chanderi sari for one of the key scenes in the movie where Akshay Kumar’s character visits the UN, accompanied by Sonam. Tell us about some interesting details added to Sonam’s wardrobe in the movie?
R Balki wanted a visual connect between both the leading ladies (Sonam and Radhika Apte) in the film. Radhika wears a pair of gold jhumkas in the movie, which we adapted in silver for Sonam’s character in a slightly bigger size. What was Sonam’s involvement in chalking out her look?
Sonam made small additions to her look. Giving her characters glasses and a backpack were her ideas. Do you have a favourite look from the movie?
The second time Sonam visits the village, she is wearing an orange Péro kurti that is actually mine. We teamed this with a Vrisa by Rahul n Shikha stole, jeans and a burlap backpack. The scene is very significant, as Sonam comes in and takes the storyline forward. She enters the picture as a ray of hope, and we wanted that metaphorical brightness she brings to translate on screen visually as well. We really thought this look through, and it ultimately came together beautifully. Catch a few of Sonam Kapoor’s unseen inside looks from Pad Man in our slideshow: 1 /13
Friday, February 9 2018
The making of Sonam Kapoor’s wardrobe for Pad Man
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