Apple TV+’s latest sci-fi anthology Extrapolations offers a futuristic vision of the Earth – its topography and inhabitants ravaged by the effects of climate change. The limited-edition series, which spans eight episodes, begins in 2037 and spans 33 years. Using interlocking stories and recurring characters, each episode sheds light on the consequences of global warming – wildfires, heat waves, droughts, poor air quality – and the citizens who suffer from cardiovascular disease, neurological and respiratory as a result. Producer and screenwriter Scott Z. Burns is no stranger to this kind of end-times storytelling; he is known for his work on Contagiona 2011 film that gained popularity at the start of the COVID-19 lockdown for its prescience.
ExtrapolationsThe costume design team of, consisting of Nancy Steiner, Katie Riley and Analucia McGorty, focused on fusing evolving fashion trends with the series’ futuristic surroundings and its star-studded cast, which includes Meryl Streep, Kit Harington, Forest Whitaker, Edward Norton, Sienna Miller, Marion Cotillard, Gemma Chan and Keri Russell.
While the department focused on the fashion cycle, the emphasis was on sustainability, as they sourced most of the clothing from thrift stores and vintage boutiques. “I thought about different things that happened over time in the past, and what we’re going through now in terms of climate change,” said Steiner, who worked on the cabinets for lost in translation And twin peaks told me via Zoom.
Most costumes of Extrapolations were based on what the future will look like if current environmental efforts are not stepped up. “It’s the loss of materials and the loss of natural fibers,” McGorty (Laid, american horror story) added. “Besides, who is going to be able to afford things that still look like natural fibres? What do the ultra-rich have to do to stay ultra-rich, generationally, and what does that mean when it comes to clothing? »
From a storytelling perspective, Riley (Mozart in the Jungle, Leave the one on the right in) added that the job of the costume department was to honor these characters and their circumstances. “In part of an episode, we go to a village where all the villagers have to sleep underground during the day,” she said. “But I imagine they also hung out their laundry to dry during the day. So how would you see the really harsh elements playing out in the clothes? How would we demonstrate how the climate affects people in their lives everyday where, you don’t even have to say it, you can just see it?”
Below, Steiner, McGorty, and Riley break down each of the show’s characters and explain how their individual storylines played into their looks.
Kit Harington as Nicholas Bilton
Nicholas Bilton is a tech billionaire and the CEO of Alpha Industries. At home he usually wears traditional British hunting clothes as well as comfortable leisure wear, while in the courtroom he dons classic silhouettes. “I kind of based it off of our present-day zillionaires, like Twitter’s Jack Dorsey,” Steiner said. “When he started Twitter he was wearing simple black t-shirts. But then he got into Rick Owens and started wearing cool silver boots. He now understands fashion and what money does for you.
Sienna Miller as Rebecca Shearer
Rebecca Shearer, archivist at DNA-based IP firm Menagierie 2100, leans towards minimalist and modern clothing, her looks clean, comfortable and in neutral colors. “She’s a professional woman, but she’s not a costume professional,” Steiner said. “She’s not in this corporate world. She is alone. Her job is mostly solitary, and so she could be comfortable with who she was. I did some simple looks. They are heavily influenced by Japan in texture, fit, silhouette and color.
Marion Cotillard as Sylvie Bolo
Sylvie Bolo’s main character arc consists of her plans for a lavish anniversary dinner for her husband on New Year’s Eve. For her dress in the pivotal scene, Steiner turned to nature and large floral prints. . “I wanted to show that she had money at some point,” she said. “And how she was still going to dress up and look stylish on New Year’s Eve, even though it’s basically the end of the world.” Here, she engages in a discussion with Anna, played by Hari Nef.
Meryl Streep as Eve Shearer
Eve Shearer, Rebecca Shearer’s mother, becomes terminally ill in the series. For her look, Nancy Steiner wanted to create an elegant and chic outfit that was above all comfortable, so Steiner focused her on colors and silhouettes. “Meryl was wonderful,” she added. “She was definitely a healthy mom and a sick mom look. And with that, it was really about clothes. She was a sophisticated, educated, and empowered woman.
Diane Lane as Martha Russel
Martha Russell, played by Diane Lane, is Nicholas Bilton’s right-hand man at Alpha Industries. The costume design team wanted to illustrate her evolution, as she had come a long way in her career – ultimately, in a position of power. So they used clean silhouettes and graphic details. “Diane has been an actress for a long time,” McGorty said. “And as an artist, she really investigates her character. She’s brilliant. We had this great editing with her and all these conversations about her character and what she felt was her character’s past, as well than on the strength she drew from. This type of strength inspired us a lot.
Gemma Chan as Natasha Alper
Natasha Alper, a single mom who hires an artificial companion on the show, was always meant to be the epitome of chic and style sensibility. Steiner aimed to create a wardrobe that was both current and classic for Natasha. “The colors we used represented the different scenes and emotions she was going through,” the costume designer said. “They would be brighter or darker, depending on what was happening in the scene.”
Keri Russell as Olivia Drew
Olivia Drew works as a secret assassin who travels across India in search of two men. Riley wanted to create ensembles that could blend in anywhere and were practical for her work. She looked at some pieces that had a military feel, but stressed that she wanted to incorporate softness and adaptability into the looks. As a result, the designer played with textures and dressed Olivia in a lot of Issey Miyake. “I found the pleating really interesting,” Riley said. “What I loved about these pieces is that they told a different story from every angle. When you look at the construction of these garments and the way they move, I thought it was interesting for someone trying to disappear.
Murray Bartlett as Ariel Turner
A top lawyer defending Nicholas Bilton in a lawsuit, Ariel Turner’s wardrobe evoked a new kind of future prospect. McGorty designed a range of classic power suits for Nicholas and paired them with striped skirts instead of pants. “I really wanted to play with the genre,” she said. “The world I created in my head was a world where gender was no longer an issue going forward – a world where gender fluidity was accepted, even among the wealthiest and most powerful.”