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'Skyfall': Why are James Bond's pants getting tighter?

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Image Credit: Francois Duhamel

That sly smirk, those smooth suits, and of course, the gadgets. British secret agent James Bond has been around on film for 50 years, running and posing, an iconic male fashion plate. But even as embodied by a range of actors, from the manly Sean Connery to the charming Roger Moore, the svelte Pierce Brosnan, and, since 2006, the gritty, blonde Daniel Craig, a few things remain the same for 007’s look: pure, tailored, retro coolness.

So when it came to pulling together Craig’s outfits for his third Bond vehicle, costume designer Jany Temime turned to trusted source Tom Ford. The designer, who created Craig’s bespoke suits for 2008’s Quantum of Solace, took things a step further for Skyfall (in theaters Nov. 9), providing a head-to-toe wardrobe for Bond, from hard leather lace-up ankle boots, to tuxedos, suits and overcoats, custom cuff links and sleek aviator shades, all from Ford’s eponymous label.

“Tom Ford has been a dream. He completely respected what I wanted,” said Temime, whose past work includes dressing Harry, Hermione and the rest of the cast of characters in the Harry Potter franchise. 

For Skyfall, Temime worked with Craig to come up with design concepts before calling Ford to fill the order. How did she go about modernizing, Bonds’ classic streamlined clothes while honoring his signature look? By adhering to a trifecta of constants, maintained since Connery brought the character to life in the very first Bond film, 1962’s Dr. No.

“James Bond is an active man, an English gentleman, and a sexy man, and that will never change. I always kept in mind those things,” Temime said. “He will run, kill, jump. You can’t change Bond. You can only update him. The man, Daniel Craig, by himself is a beauty. He has a great body, and a great sense of fashion. He’s not one of those men who says, ‘I’m not going to wear that.’”

For Skyfall’s action-packed opening sequence alone, said Temime, an impressive 60 versions of Craig’s Tom Ford suit were used, with 30 earmarked for Craig, and 30 for a double and stunt double. Each piece was specific to the scene, so, for example,  when Craig was called on to ride a motorcycle, he wore suits with longer sleeves that wouldn’t ride up over his forearms.

“Each suit had three fittings, like a real traditional Saville Row suit,” said Temime. “It was very high class tailoring. The first suit was mohair, very lightweight, woolen silk. The tuxedo is woolen silk. They were all [made of] beautiful fabric. He [would be] jumping and fighting, and then he would stand up, and the suit would be perfect.”

As for Craig’s noticeably close-fitting pants — and what’s under them (who wouldn’t want to know?) — Temime admits she obsessed over every stitch of Bond’s ensemble, right down to his body-hugging boxer briefs.

“I didn’t want to have a business suit. I wanted to have a sexy suit,” said Temime. “Action wise, to do James Bond, you need to have the body for it. The shirts were very close to the body, so you could see his body. They are quite tight.”

Learn more about the cool clothes, accessories and gadgets carried by Daniel Craig’s Bond in Skyfall and get an inside look at the making of more stylish movies and TV shows in this week’s issue of Entertainment Weekly, on newsstands now.

Read more:

‘Skyfall’ action clip: James Bond catches his train in style
James Bond, ‘Twilight,’ the Muppets and more movie and TV-inspired nail polish collections
Accessorized to kill: Swarovski’s ‘James Bond’ jewelry collections

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