Is Madonna’s ‘W.E.’ an Oscar contender for Best Costume Design?

W.E.” may have received mixed reviews when it debuted at the Venice Film Festival in September, but its latest trailer proves it is an undeniable Oscar contender for Best Costume Design.


The Madonna-directed film is about a New York woman, played by Abbie Cornish, obsessed with England’s King Edward VIII (James D’Arcy) and his lover Wallis Simpson (Andrea Riseborough). The monarch famously abdicated his throne in 1936 to marry Simpson, a divorced American socialite. The abdication featured heavily into last year’s Best Picture winner “The King’s Speech” with Guy Pearce and Eve Best in the roles. One of that film’s twelve Academy Award nominations was for Jenny Beaven‘s costumes.

The elegant wardrobe in “W.E.” was created by Arianne Phillips. She was previously Oscar-nominated for her work on the Johnny Cash biopic “Walk the Line” (2005). She additionally has a BAFTA Award nomination for “A Single Man” (2009) and Costume Designers Guild Awards nods for “Walk the Line,” “3:10 to Yuma” (2007), and “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” (2001).

Period dramas centering around royalty regularly win over Academy voters in the costuming field. Biopics “The Young Victoria” (2009), “Elizabeth: The Golden Age” (2007), and “Marie Antoinette” (2005) were vicotrious in recent years.

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“W.E.” unspools in theaters on December 9, 2011.

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