Anyone else insanely excited for the Pitch Perfect sequel? We can’t wait to see the Bellas again next year, so obviously we couldn’t pass up the chance to talk to the movie’s costume designer, Salvador Perez.
When we first met the Bellas, they were rocking black pants and wedge sneakers. That’s all changing, though. Read below to get some exclusive scoop on the costumes and more in Pitch Perfect 2.
SHEfinds: The costumes from Pitch Perfect 1 became so iconic–how did you come up with them?
Salvador Perez: In the script, the Bellas were supposed to look like flight attendants with red ties. I played with the idea, but decided the gold paisley scarves were hipper. I bought the suits off the rack, and then totally re-cut them and shortened the sleeves to make them sexier. The characters each needed an identity, so as a costume designer you do it through their clothing. I think the audience instantly knew who each character was just by looking at them.
SF: What can we expect costume-wise in Pitch Perfect 2? Will the style be more grown up?
SP: The characters are now college seniors–more mature and confident–so you get to see the evolution of these characters from girls to women. They are all rock stars now and show it in the way they dress. The performance looks are all new and spectacular, everything is custom made and unique–it’s “Bellas 2.0.” I always have fun with accessories; to me it’s the finishing touch to my costume design. You will see some great jewelry and lots of Casio Baby-G watches.
SF: The new Pitch Perfect is filming in Louisiana–any tips for dressing when it’s hot and humid?
SP: It’s hot and humid in Baton Rouge, so airy fabrics are a must. In the first film we shot in the winter so a lot of costumes were dictated by the cold. This time we are shooting in the heat of the summer, so I dressed the actors for the heat in lots of sleeveless outfits and shorts. We shot a couple of winter scenes and the poor actors had on coats and scarves, I felt so bad. But they loved it when it was a tank top and shorts.
SF: How’d you get your start? How’d you get into costume design?
SP: I went to FIDM to be a fashion designer, like Calvin Klein. I was always a great stitcher, so I was hired to make some costumes for a film, and it took off from there. I moved up to workroom supervisor on films like Titanic and Stargate, and assistant costume designer on Barb Wire and the Phantom. I was styling a tour with a singer and met the singer/producer Kenny “Baby Face” Edmonds and his wife. I designed their wedding and when they produced their first film Soul Food, they asked me to costume design it, so I sort of fell into film costume design by accident, and now I am the president of the Costume Designers Guild. I love design and am working on a couple of design projects, so my fashion design background may finally come to fruition. But I love costume design, as we get to tell part of the story through clothes.
SF: Who’s your favorite Pitch Perfect character and why?
SP: I have always enjoyed the rock star clothes of Beca. She is a lot of fun to dress, but I am most proud of the performance clothes on this movie as I got to design and have them made. The audience is in for a visual feast, as we have really gone big with this movie. I cannot wait for everyone to see it!