This blog is a continuation of our series on directors Wes & Paul Thomas Anderson’s fashion styles.
After a decade of indelible films in the 2000s, Wes & Paul enjoyed a measure of mainstream validation for their work by the turn of the 2010s. A period of unyielding creative output, both directors released 3 feature films by decade’s end: 2012 saw Moonrise Kingdom & The Master; 2014 had The Grand Budapest Hotel & Inherent Vice; 2017 saw the release of Paul’s Phantom Thread, followed by Wes’ Isle Of Dogs in 2018.
As the decade progressed, each director also enjoyed the passing of their forties, and with it, the waning of comments about their boyish looks Both men were finally being treated by the public as truly unique artists instead of posturing charlatans that got lucky – the American Princes of indie cinema, now Dukes. It’s only right that they dress the part as well.
With awards season underway, Wes dresses to impress at the 67th Golden Globe Awards in January where Fantastic Mr. Fox is nominated for Best Animated Feature.
Wes wears a black velvet suit, red micro check pattern shirt, and black bowtie – the velvet material playing a key role in setting his suit apart from others at the event.
The Best Animated Feature category would be awarded to Pixar’s Up.
At the Paris premiere of Fantastic Mr. Fox in February, Wes poses with composer and voice actor for the film Jarvis Cocker.
Wes switches from his usual tweed to this beige, polyester looking trench coat instead. He wears it with a beige scarf, red sweater, red check tie, grey wool trousers, and his classic tan moccasin wallabees.
Also of note is a wool cap in Wes’ hands that he keeps off while indoors.
Fantastic Mr. Fox is nominated for two Oscars at the 82nd Academy Awards: Best Animated Feature, and Best Original Score. Pictured here is the composer for the film Alexandre Desplat, with his wife, violinist Dominique Lemonnier.
Fantastic Mr. Fox would lose both categories to the same film: Pixar’s Up for best animated feature, and best original score by Michael Giacchino.
Again channeling the fashion styles of his lead character, Wes rocks another orange suit at a photocall for the Italian premiere of Fantastic Mr. Fox. He keeps it simple with a light blue shirt, and pale pink knit tie.
In this additional photo we see Wes’ beige socks as well, albeit sliding down his leg a bit.
By May of 2011, Wes began principal photography on his newest film, Moonrise Kingdom. The behind the scenes featurette above offers a glimpse at what Wes wore during production.
Like every film since The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou, Wes wears different variations of a suit on set.
While directing this scene with Bruce Willis, Wes dresses in a lighter tan suit, blue sweater, and plaid shirt underneath.
Showing the versatility and interchangeability of a good garment, Wes combines his tan suit jacket and orange/green plaid shirt from the previous picture with a striped pair of seersucker pants, completely altering the look and vibe of the outfit.
Predictably, these are worn with a pair of tan wallabees, but at least they look like a new pair.
Another view of the plaid shirt without the jacket.
Here, Wes layers his plaid shirt in another stylish combo: beige sweater, dark brown suit, and a blue/green tartan scarf.
Wes’ dark brown suit and scarf from before goes over his blue shirt and beige sweater. The moccasin wallabees make an appearance as well.
For the exterior rain shoots at Fort Lebanon, Wes dons a yellow rain slicker over his dark brown suit. Fashionable and functional.
After some minor trouble finding financial backing for the film, production finally begins on Paul Thomas Anderson’s The Master in June of 2011.
A five year hiatus separated this film and his previous effort, There Will Be Blood, however, Paul seems to have found his director’s uniform in this rugged, frontier look.
He wears a brown linen shirt over some blue jeans and black bracelet, an outfit that is more or less varied during production of the film.
Paul in a white shirt, brown pants directing the “processing scene”. With the changing of technology, Paul also has white earbuds to listen to playback with rather than bulky headphones of the past.
Paul in a blue plaid shirt holding the Panavision 65mm camera the film was shot on.
Messy hair, messy beard, he’s almost the younger man from the Punch-Drunk Love days, but his grey whiskers are clearly that of an older, wiser director.
Paul has a cigarette break behind the scenes with his two stars Phillip Seymour Hoffman & Joaquin Phoenix. Paul’s standard shirt and pants combo is augmented with hiking boots and a sun hat.
Paul sets up a shot with his cinematographer Mihai Mălaimare Jr. (kneeling, foreground) and camera department. Paul matches the white and blue checkered shirt with blue jeans and a white undershirt that is just barely peeking out the top.
After a rigorous post-production process, Moonrise Kingdom is finally ready for audiences by May of 2012. The film is selected to open the 65th Cannes Film Festival before its wide release.
Here, Wes arrives at the photo call with Bill Murray, both dressed to the nines. Like his lawyer character in the film, Bill Murray gets really expressive with competing patterns in his outfit.
Wes, meanwhile, opts for a tranquil cream colored suit, purple check shirt, and red/gold tie. Unlike most men’s suits, the pockets on Wes’ jacket are functional rather than decorative, letting him quickly ditch his phone inside.
In this fuller view, we see that, you guessed it, Wes has paired this outfit with his famous tan moccasin wallabees, a shoe he’s been wearing for the last 20 or so years.
Standing with him from left to right is: co-writer Roman Coppola, and co-stars Jared Gilman & Kara Hayward.
At the red carpet ceremonies, Wes and the cast attend in more formal wear.
Wes favors the black velvet suit, bowtie, and red check shirt again – a trademark red carpet look. But his most iconic accessory is in the form of what appears to be an iPhone 4S that he uses to record the event. By then the newest model of iPhone, the 4S was soon to be replaced with the [drumroll please] iPhone 5 the following year.
At the festival, the top Palme d’Or prize was given to Michael Haneke’s Amour, but Moonrise Kingdom did not go home empty handed. For the excellent performance by Suzy’s cat “Tabitha”, the film was awarded with the Palme de Whiskers for best feline actor.
Paul’s newest film, The Master, sits in a certain amount of mystery during its production until August 2012, when the film makes its world premiere at the 69th Venice Film Festival. Pictured here, Paul arrives at a photocall with his friend and star of the film, Philip Seymour Hoffman.
Paul dresses as blue as his film with a linen chambray shirt and navy chinos. For footwear, he’s got grey New Balance sneakers with orange laces.
In the main competition, The Master won two awards at Venice: the Silver Lion for Best Directing, and the Volpi Cup for Best Acting. The highest “Golden Lion” prize was awarded to Kim Ki-duk’s Pietà.
By September, The Master makes its way to the Toronto International Film Festival in Ontario, Canada. Paul poses next to his star Amy Adams, and producing partner Joanne Sellar.
Paul again in his navy chinos and new balances, but this time keeps things a little more formal with a tucked-in white dress shirt.
The Master played in the “Special Presentations” category alongside Derek Cianfrance’s The Place Beyond The Pines, and Harmony Korine’s Spring Breakers.
Paul and The Master star Joaquin Phoenix attend the Los Angeles Film Critics Awards in January 2012.
An extension of the wartime fashions in the film, Paul wears a navy peacoat as a suit jacket in this azure winter look. A lovely contrast to the black suits typically seen at these events.
The Master won four categories (including Best Director), and received Runner-Up designation for three others including Best Picture.
The 28th Santa Barbara Film Festival in February 2013 honored Amy Adams with the Cinema Vanguard award for her role in The Master. Here, she poses next to Paul with the award.
Paul’s dresses more casually for this event than the LAFCA awards. His orange-laced New Balances make another appearance in this mostly monochrome color scheme: a lovely tweed herringbone jacket, charcoal shirt, and black jeans.
Following the warm reception of Moonrise Kingdom, Wes begins production of his newest film entitled The Grand Budapest Hotel, which was shot between January and March of 2013.
The behind the scenes video shows Wes in variations of a tweed suit and sweater that changes based on where they are shooting.
Another angle on the tweed jacket.
The same outfit but styled with a dark red scarf. Also of note is the footwear: tan moccasin wallabees.
Outside, Wes wears an olive parka with faux fur lining and duck boots.
By May of 2013, Paul began production on his newest film, the first to ever be adapted from a Thomas Pynchon novel, Inherent Vice.
Above, Paul directs Joaquin Phoenix on the Chryskylodon Institute set. He’s in a lightweight white shirt, pale brown shorts, and brown suede low-rise boots.
Paul chats with Martin Short between takes on Inherent Vice. He matches his blue chinos with two shades of purple: first as a pale top layer shirt, then as a scoop neck undershirt layer.
After some flirtations with hats in the past, Paul finally wears one on set, which is natural given the summer shooting schedule.
Here, the hat makes another appearance. This time with a blue shirt over the pale brown shorts, combined with his trusty orange-laced New Balances.
At the Topanga Canyon house, Paul’s purple scoop neck shirt is sighted again with his navy pants, only this time without any other layering.
Paul planning a shot with the viewfinder in another purple shirt. The classic white earbuds have officially replaced over ear headphones.
Paul posing with Josh Brolin behind the scenes. Paul in blue jeans, and finally tucking in his shirt for once.
Shooting in downtown Los Angeles, Paul walks with his cinematographer Robert Elswit (far right), and cameraperson for a tracking shot of Joaquin Phoenix
Paul pairs navy on navy with a brown belt and a black sneaker – possibly Converse.
British style magazine Port does a cover story on Paul about The Master in June of 2013. He’s dressed in a wrinkly white shirt and tan chinos as if he were on one of his movie sets.
The full interview can be found on their website.
By February 2014, The Grand Budapest Hotel premiered as the opening film at the 64th Berlin Film Festival. Wes and his cast pose here at the photocall. From left to right: Jeff Goldblum, Tilda Swinton, Willem Dafoe, Wes, Ralph Fiennes, Tony Revolori, & Saoirse Ronan.
Wes’ “Star Portrait” from the event.
Wes’ tweed suit and wool tie are a big hit. At the moment of writing this, Wes’ Berlin ‘14 outfit is immortalized as his primary photo on wikipedia.com
At the actual red carpet screening, Wes takes the opportunity to break out his favorite black velvet suit. Even Bill Murray – the fashion clown – conjures a dazzling outfit in line with his character of the film, a respected hotelier in high society Europe.
Close up on the trio.
From this angle we see the red check pattern on Wes’ shirt, the clearly expensive fabric tufts on his white scarf, and the color of his bowtie which is a dark purple or aubergine.
The Grand Budapest Hotel won the runner up Silver Bear Grand Jury prize. The top Golden Bear prize was awarded to Diao Yinan for their film Black Coal, Thin Ice.
The Grand Budapest Hotel makes its US debut at the Alice Tully Hall in New York later that month. Wes poses in front of a mock Budapest Hotel with the cast. From left to right: Saoirse Ronan, Willem Dafoe, Tony Revolori, Wes, Adrien Brody, Harvey Keitel, Waris Ahluwalia, and F. Murray Abraham.
For the event, Wes channels the color scheme of his film with a purple velvet suit, purple check shirt, and black tie. Of course no Wes outfit would be complete without tan wallabees.
Wes attends the premiere of his friend and collaborator Noah Baumbach’s film, While We’re Young in September. Both are pictured here with fellow director Spike Jonze.
Wes continues the tweed look, but adds a dash of pastel in the yellow scarf and pale green tie.
Paul’s newest film, Inherent Vice, finally premieres at the 52nd New York Film Festival in October of 2014. From left to right: Paul, Owen Wilson, Joaquin Phoenix, & assistant director Adam Somner.
Once again, Paul is the least formal out of a group that includes Joaquin Phoenix. Although Paul forgoes a suit, the shirt he chooses is one of the more stylish ones we’ve seen him in. It’s navy blue with the top 5 buttons a different color than the others.
This full body shot features Paul’s trusty orange-laced shoes, and dark wash (possibly raw) denim jeans.
Inherent Vice screened as the Centerpiece Feature on the festival’s Main Slate of films, a slate that included the Safdie Brothers’ Heaven Knows What, Jean-Luc Godard’s Goodbye To Language, and Yann Demange’s ‘71 (a film we highlighted on the blog for its tactical use of a Barry Keoghan).
At the American Film Institute’s festival in November, Paul wears a dark grey jacket over a blue crew neck t-shirt. Like his hair, Paul’s beard is long and wild, an echo of the hippie stylings in Inherent Vice.
In December, Wes takes his velvet purple suit on tour to the 40th Los Angeles Film Critics Awards. He keeps his shirt a subdued purple check pattern so that he can balance out the particularly abstract tie pattern.
Details of Wes’ shirt and tie fabric.
The Grand Budapest Hotel won 2 awards: Best Production & Best Screenplay. It also received Runner-Up designation in Best Director and Best Picture categories.
At the same awards show, Jonny Greenwood’s score for Inherent Vice won Best Use of Music, however he did not attend.
For a late December profile in The Guardian preceding Inherent Vice’s premiere in the United Kingdom, Paul poses in a seemingly new blue fleece sweater. Armor against harsh British weather.
This other shot from the same profile shows Paul again in raw denim jeans, and a black high top shoe.
The 72nd Golden Globe Awards airs in January of 2015, with The Grand Budapest Hotel receiving 5 nominations. Pictured here on the red carpet from left to right: Wes, Jason Schwartzman, Jeremy Dawson (producer), Adrien Brody, & Roman Coppola (producer).
Wes wears his lucky velvet black suit and red check shirt. This time we see a white handkerchief in his jacket pocket.
Out of all the nominations, The Grand Budapest Hotel only needed to win one, the top award for Best Picture, Musical or Comedy.
This clip of Wes’ acceptance speech for Best Picture shows that he is NOT wearing his classic tan wallabees, but rather, a darker black pair instead.
Wes’ speech is succinct and clever and names more people than most can in a single speech.
Wes holding his Golden Globe.
Ahead of the Italian premiere of Inherent Vice, Paul attends a press conference with star Joaquin Phoenix.
Paul’s blue fleece sweater from the Observer interview makes another appearance.
This full body view gives another look at Paul’s black high top shoes.
Wes with his fellow directors at the 67th Director’s Guild Awards in Los Angeles. From left to right: Richard Linklater, Morten Tyldum, Clint Eastwood, Alejandro González Iñárritu, & Wes.
Wes wears a lightweight grey and white striped suit, blue check shirt, and heather grey sweater. The abstract black/white tie from The Grand Budapest Hotel’s premiere also makes another appearance.
For footwear, Wes finally does not wear a pair of wallabees. This time, he opts for a tan saddle oxford shoe that balances the rest of his monochromatic outfit.
Another angle of Wes chatting with fellow director Alejandro González Iñárritu.
At the Writer’s Guild of America, Wes is awarded with Best Original Screenplay. His acceptance speech above shows his orange velvet suit and tan wallabees.
Wes holding his Writer’s Guild Award for The Grand Budapest Hotel. His saddle oxfords also make an appearance.
The Grand Budapest Hotel is nominated for 9 awards at the 87th Academy Awards that year. From left to right: Wes, Jason Schwartzman, Tony Revolori, & Jeff Goldblum.
Wes wears a velvet black suit with a pale yellow check shirt, pastel green handkerchief, and black leather wallabees.
Inherent Vice is also nominated at the Oscars, including Best Adapted Screenplay for Paul. Here he poses next to wife, Maya Rudolph, in a classic black tuxedo – critically Paul chooses a black tie over bowtie for the event.
This full body photo shows Paul’s choice of black cap toe derby shoe. Standing next to Paul and Maya is director Bennet Miller.
Best Adapted Screenplay would go to Graham Moore’s script for The Imitation Game, based on the biography by Andrew Hodges.
Wes with producer Jeremy Dawson, and writer Hugo Guiness.
The Grand Budapest Hotel would win 4 out of the 9 categories it was nominated for, including Best Costume Design for Milena Canonero.
Best Picture would go to Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Birdman (or, The Unexpected Virtue Of Ignorance).
In March, the Austin Film Festival hosted a panel that included Paul and his creative hero, Jonathan Demme. The Texas atmosphere has him dressing in denim chambray and dusty navy trousers.
The full conversation can be watched on YouTube.
In October 2016, Wes posts a video announcing production on Isle Of Dogs, and to promote a contest that would allow one lucky fan to voice-act in the film.
For the video, Wes wears a red and blue check shirt and a lavalier microphone.
Wes observing Isle Of Dogs in production. He wears a dark red suit and beige shirt/sweater combo.
With newfound creative energy, Paul moves quickly into production on his new film, entitled Phantom Thread, in January 2017. It would be his second collaboration with star Daniel Day-Lewis, and the first film shot outside the States.
Here, Paul emphasizes function over form, but is no less stylish for it. A black sweater over olive green trousers and boots give him a faux-military look that resembles the authority of his lead character Reynolds Woodcock.
And for the first time in nearly twenty years, Paul wears his eyeglasses to set, this time opting for a brilliant square tortoise shell frame.
Like Wes, Paul has a habit of dressing like his characters or dressing in the period during production of his films – call it “method directing”.
Above, Paul tucks his white dress shirt into wool slacks, but is nowhere near as neat as Day-Lewis next to him. Noteworthy however, is the silver watch seen on Paul’s left hand. Quite an upgrade from his old casio.
Seen at the far right, Paul stands in another white shirt and dark trousers, but this time he keeps things untucked. Unlike previous films where Paul used white earbuds, Phantom Thread sees Paul using the over ear headphones instead.
The moody black and white set photos taken by gaffer Jonathan Franklin.
At the countryside cafe where Reynolds meets Alma, Paul wears a heavy looking blue cardigan sweatshirt while directing Daniel Day-Lewis. His glasses, removed and placed on the table after laughing too hard.
When it’s warm enough however, Paul can easily switch back to SoCal mode with another of his scoop neck t-shirts.
Old school meets new school. Paul wears a blue shirt tucked into his wool slacks, brown belt, and silver watch, side-by-side with Day-Lewis in period specific evening wear.
In November, Paul screens Phantom Thread to an audience at the Director’s Guild of America.
He’s in brown shoes, brown socks, olive pants, white shirt, and an unstructured dark navy work coat in the style that Reynolds Woodcock wears in the film.
By December, Phantom Thread makes its world premiere in New York. Paul stands with his cast: Vicky Krieps, Daniel Day-Lewis, & Leslie Manville.
Being on the east coast prompts Paul to bundle up more than he did in London. He wears this multicolored scarf over a white dress shirt, black tie, wool trousers, and the same jacket from the DGA screening.
The premiere is quite an affair, with lots of celebs coming out to pay their respects to Daniel Day-Lewis’ final film performance.
Paul and actor Michael Shannon.
Paul and actor/producer Bob Odenkirk.
Let the press tour begin!
Vanity Fair hosts a Phantom Thread fashion show in January that features the original costumes in the film. Naturally, it seems right that Paul should dress up in a full suit. Next to him is star Vicky Krieps.
Paul with some of the models and costumes from the event.
Paul standing next to the costume designer on every one of his films, Mark Bridges.
Paul makes his return to television appearances on The Jimmy Kimmel Live show. For the appearance, he wears another unstructured navy blazer over a blue dress shirt, and olive slacks.
At the 33rd Santa Barbara Film Festival in February, Paul sits on a filmmaker panel with fellow directors: Christopher Nolan, Greta Gerwig, Guillermo Del Toro, & Jordan Peele.
Paul balances out the blue of his jacket with khaki slacks and brown boots.
Paul poses on a lavish couch for piece in the LA Times. His casual navy jacket and black jeans are underscored by his striped socks and brown sneakers.
In mid February, Isle Of Dogs opened the 68th Berlin Film Festival to much acclaim. The film earned Wes the Silver Bear prize for Best Directing, while the Golden Bear was awarded to Adina Pintilie’s Touch Me Not.
For the event, Wes wears his classic black velvet suit and black wallabees, only this time he combines it all with a pistachio green shirt.
Wes’ Star Portrait from the festival. A tweed suit, knit yellow tie, and a green/white check shirt.
Only able to stay casual for so long, Paul suits up again for the 90th Academy Awards in March. He’s pictured here on the red carpet with wife Maya Rudolph.
This is Paul’s most fitted tuxedo to date. No bagginess, just clean lines.
While Best Picture would go to Guillermo Del Toro’s The Shape Of Water, costume designer Mark Bridges received his second Oscar for his work in Phantom Thread. Bridges also gave the shortest acceptance speech of the night, earning him a brand new jet ski along with the award for Best Costume Design.
Shortly after the Oscars, Paul attends the Texas film awards to do a panel with fellow director Richard Linklater.
The unstructured blazer makes a return, as do his brown sneakers from the LA Times photo. Both men forgo a tie for the event.
Isle Of Dogs travels to Austin, Texas as well for it’s South By Southwest premiere. From left to right: Bill Murray, Bob Balaban, Kunichi Nomura, Janet Pierson, Wes, Jeremy Dawson, and Jeff Goldblum.
Wes’ hair is cut a bit shorter than it normally is, but still perfectly stylish. Isle Of Dogs would win the Audience Award at the festival.
Wes and his wife, artist Juman Malouf, attend the French premiere of Isle Of Dogs in Paris. Wes opts for the rare double breasted suit with a black knit tie, red check shirt, and brown wallabees.
Paul at the premiere of Paul Dano’s Wildlife in October of that year. From left to right: Paul Dano, Paul, Zoe Kazan, & Carey Mulligan.
Wes moves into principal photography on his latest project, The French Dispatch, in February. His tweed suit and checkered shirt are complemented by his textured scarf as well.
Set photos by Owen Wilson’s mother, Laura Wilson.
Super incognito set photo of the middle segment of the film that stars Timothee Chalamet and Frances McDormand. Wes is unmistakably visible as the one in an orange suit.
Paul on the red carpet supporting the release of Adam Sandler’s stand up special 100% Fresh in May 2019. His navy blazer has its collar turned all the way out, competing with (and losing to) Sandler’s immensely effortless cool and casual vibes.
Paul in his classic shirt and slacks combo shooting HAIM’s music video for “Summer Girl”.
The video was released online in July 2019.
For the A24 Podcast, Paul is recruited for a conversation with directors Josh & Benny Safdie in December.
Paul wears his trademark navy blazer with denim jeans, and brown oxford shoes.
Which brings us now to the 20s. At the start of this decade, both Andersons had new projects already announced. For Paul, it was a still untitled, coming of age period piece. For Wes, it was a similarly vague, untitled story set in period France. The best sources indicated that the films, though in pre-production, would be released before the end of the year in time to qualify for an Oscar run.
And then you know what happened.
Now, over a year later, both films have titles and both are making their way to the public. For Wes, The French Dispatch Of The Liberty, Kansas Evening Sun is a return to form since the stop motion animated sle Of Dogs.
Meanwhile Paul’s film, the 70s bildungsroman Licorice Pizza, is set for a Christmas rollout and January 1st debut at The Frida Cinema.
Shooting under strict COVID protocols, Paul doesn’t sacrifice style for safety. He’s wearing a simple grey t-shirt, blue trousers, and brown sneakers.
Notable accessories include: blue LA Dodgers hat, sunglasses, KN95 mask, colored wrist bands (possibly indicative of COVID testing), and a portable camera monitor so he can view takes.
Another angle of the Dodgers hat.
Paul directing in a blue shirt, with a twine bracelet on his right wrist.
A tabloid reporting on the film identifies Sean Penn and a “crew member” on set. Does this mystery crew look familiar yet?
Yes, the unnamed crew member was in fact, the director himself. Paul wears a white v-neck shirt and black jeans for this day of production.
The 74th Cannes Film Festival premieres Wes’ long-awaited The French Dispatch Of The Liberty, Kansas Evening Sun. This photo of Wes and his cast went semi viral over the summer due to it’s clashing of fashion styles.
Wes wears another striped seersucker suit with white loafers, red socks, and tan necktie. His sunglasses are on his head, helping to keep his head out of his face.
In October, The French Dispatch had its Gala premiere in Paris. The film continues its rollout around the world.
Wes’ velvet magenta suit contrasts neatly with the red carpet.
Variety publishes a cover story on Paul’s latest feature film, Licorice Pizza. Photographed in his home, Paul wears another simple grey t-shirt and khaki pants.
November, The French Dispatch premieres in Italy. Wes poses in his current iteration of fashion style.
He wears a green velvet suit, yellow sweater, checkered shirt, and tan loafers.
Licorice Pizza screens to a private press audience in Westwood. It’s here we see Paul in his most current form: mature, but still with his trademark casual edge.
Paul wears a grey suit jacket over a black t-shirt, black trousers, striped socks, and brown sneakers. He’s also updated his eyewear with thinner rectangle tortoise shell frames.
Wes & Paul remain some of the most exciting American filmmakers today. Each of their films, an event. That they are also two of the most stylish filmmakers, is just a happy coincidence.
Whether on set, or on the red carpet, Wes & Paul continue to blend the best in modern trends and traditional standards. It’s no surprise then that each of their films would be fashion conscious as well…but that’s an article for another time!