Perhaps the most famous thing about Shelley Duvall is the fact that the Hollywood starlet of the 70s was an entirely unintended household name. Growing up in Texas, she wanted to become a scientist before director Robert Altman plucked her from a Houston party and put her in his Brewster McCloud comedy film. The two would go on together to make other movies, including "3 Women", for which Duvall won the Cannes Best Actress Award. Duvall's quirky personality and charm helped her perform a number of roles throughout her career, lovingly known as "The Texas Twiggy" for her doe-eyed similarity to the famed 60s model. "She looks and sounds like almost no other," wrote film critic Roger Ebert, who interviewed her shortly after the 1980 release of The Shining. "There is an openness about her in all her parts, as if something had happened between her open face and our eyes – no camera, voice, make-up, acting system – and she's just being the character naturally." As Stanley Kubrick's classic horror movie turns 40, we look back on some of the iconic roles and similarly iconic looks that made Duvall an unexpected style icon of the 1970s.
The first film role for Duvall was that of Suzanne Davis, a part-time race car driver and loner Brewster's love interest in Altman's experimental comedy, Brewster McCloud. Her looks vary from a complete tangerine-haired clown to a classic red striped T-shirt, most suitably worn as a top, all overlapped with the long Twiggy-esque under eyelashes that received her nickname. As the story goes, Altman met her at her own party as the stunning 20-year-old college student, and asked her to be on the spot in his upcoming film. "I said, 'Oh, no, a porn movie," because when I was 17 in a drugstore, I'd been approached for that," she told Andy Warhol. But Duvall signed a 5-year acting contract while filming Brewster McCloud, and never looked back.
The budding young actress was photographed by Bert Stern to promote Duvall's film debut in Brewster McCloud, and made her much more glamorous debut on Vogue's pages. The shoot was influenced by the brightly colored, quirky looks of the film, not unlike the regular fits of Duvall's own (after all, she wore a bright pink flared dress, green linen boots and a pink and green silk shawl to meet Warhol). She would wear a cream knitted coat-dress, orange patterned tights and lace-up, capped purple tow boots. And the hair!
Filming The Shining, which is probably Duvall's most well-known role, was far from a fun experience for the actress with her trademark layered overalls and striking jet black makeup. Getting into character as Wendy Torrance, who's husband (Jack Nicholson) turns into a terrorizing killer, was "nearly unbearable," as Stanley Kubrick is said to have been on the set almost as terrorizing her — wanting her to feel isolated and disintegrated as Wendy herself was. "I was always in and out of ill health because the role was so overwhelming," she says in "The Complete Kubrick." "Stanley pushed me and prodded me harder than I've ever been pushed before. It's the hardest role I've ever had to play." After the film, she went back to Altman to play Olive Oyl alongside Robin Williams' Popeye.
Designers Yohji Yamamoto, Andre Courreges, Rick Owens, Thierry Mugler, Hedi Slimane, Gareth Pugh have created costumes for cinema, theatrical play and opera. Involvement into costume design is being indeed an important landmark on every designer's service record.