Interview With Marvel’s “Moon Knight” Costumer Designer Meghan Kasperlink
Marvel’s “Moon Knight” is currently dropping new episodes each week on Disney+ and recently, I got to speak with the show’s costume designer Meghan Kasperlink about designing the many costumes in the Disney+ series, including “Mr Knight” and “Moon Knight”.
Check out the interview below:
What was your role on Moon Knight and what did you actually have to do?
As the costume designer, I created or collaborated on all of the looks for the entire show, and that included creating Moon Knight and Mr. Knight.
Yeah, so I’ve going to ask, what was the process like kind of creating the Moon Knight costume first?
Well, Marvel has a great team called the vis-dev department, and so I collaborated with them in the essence of, they had already started kind of working out a general idea of the Moon Knight and the Mr. Knight costume for the series, and when I came in, I just jumped right in and helped collaborate on those costumes. And once we started going to fabrication, I created kind of created my own fabric in a sense of taking a Euro jersey and layering on the 3D prints, so we ended up creating multiple different textures within the suit for the Moon Knight costume. And then the Mr. Knight costume, we had the delightful pleasure of finding all those meters for all the suits that we had to make. So we found a pretty sensational fabric that was white, but it had a slight little lame in it, so when the light hit it, it would bounce off and have a little shimmer.
And I’ve got to ask with the Mr. Knight, is it a helmet or how does that kind of work?
It’s a mask. So it has a hard shell in it, and the fabric is pulled over it. So once you do that, that’s where the magic happens. But there’s full movement and Oscar can get in and out of it, no problem.
Yeah, because, I mean, the costume designs are just incredible and especially just the reaction of seeing Mr. Knight, how different it looks to Moon Knight. But I mean, obviously, there was a technical different, but was one easier to work with than the other?
They both had their challenges. And I think that the Mr. Knight costume was the one I was the most terrified of, because a three-piece suit can go wrong so quickly, a white suit. But it actually turned out so wonderful, and I made it completely in-house with amazing in-house tailors that we’ve filmed in Budapest, and they did such a phenomenal job. And we created so many, and the lapels were all hand-done in Budapest.
And we even custom-made the buttons that have a Khonshu symbol on the vest and on the arm, and we created those in-house and everything. So, that was really phenomenal. The Moon Knight costume had its challenges because of the pandemic. So FBFX built the costume under my direction, and I couldn’t go to the UK because of lockdown. So we would send the stunt people there, because it was very important to me to make sure that the suit could be fully functional and that they could move in it. So they would go and they would quarantine, and then they would do the fitting, and then they would come back. So all the fittings I had were over Zoom, until the costume came to us in Budapest. So that was more of the challenge.
So how many costumes were kind of made for each one? Because obviously as well, with it being pretty much white, I imagine that was pretty difficult to work with.
Yes. The Mr. Knight costume, I think we had 47. If you watch episode 2, they completely wet down the street of a cobblestone street that was kind of dirty, so we burned through a number of them a day.
It wasn’t easy, but I was very, very fortunate that my amazing tailors could just power through and make that many and they did, and they were impeccable. And a lot of them, we would clean, because it’s an upholstery fabric. So the fabric, I knew there would be challenges keeping it white, so we didn’t use an upholstery fabric, and it would clean up pretty nicely.
What were the influences on the other characters like Arthur and also Steven and Layla?
So with Steven, I collaborated with Oscar a lot on that character, just because that was who we kind of went with first. We tried to discover Steven first, before we discovered Marc. And I wanted to make sure Steven’s character is supposed to live in Brixton, which is in London, and we wanted to make sure he lived in this cool area, but he’s not too cool. So what can we do to make him interesting, but still fit into the geographical location that he’s living in? And I found these amazing vintage shirts for Oscar and we used those, then we cropped the pant, but then we kind of have a shoe that’s a little clunky. But really, I was talking to Oscar and he was like, “What if I change my posture?” And as soon as he changed his posture, I feel like we found the character instantly, and really could work from there.
With Harrow, Ethan and I sat for a very long time and just talked about references and he talked about Tolstoy and I brought up Karesh and we collaborated on making it a mix between Karesh and also a monk. And that’s why all of his looks are linen and light and being able to travel or you can acclimate to any area. So it was really great collaborating with them. And then when it came to Layla, I talked a lot with Mohamed Diab about this character because yes, she’s Egyptian, but I pushed very hard to say, but how long has she lived in London or other places? Because a transient person doesn’t necessarily continue on with the culture, but they always have it within them. So she has symbolism within her earrings and jewelry. And then also the first time we see her in London, we wanted to make sure she was a little bit more colorful and had a little bit more life to kind of represent that Egyptian culture.
What impact did the locations have trying to put together the costumes?
Oh, yes. So because of all the different locations, I wanted to make sure that not only did they work in the location, but the fabrics were okay, and we needed to have sun protection and sand protection, by the time we got to the desert and what would people in the desert actually wear, versus what you put in a TV show? So it’s pretty true, everything they pretty much would wear, so that would work. But it definitely played a part in making sure that the characters were protected, and the actors were protected, but the characters were really driven by costume.
Cool. And final question, excluding Moon Knight, what has been your favourite Disney+ original so far?
Wow. I think Wandavision was pretty sensational. I think that was kind of fresh and new and no one was really expecting that, so I think that that was pretty well done.
Marvel’s “Moon Knight” is available on Disney+ now and the finale is coming to Disney+ on Wednesday 4th May 2022.