“The idea as a costume designer of being able to go to all these different places and periods and times was so rich,” says Dayna Pink about her work on HBO’s “Lovecraft Country.” “It’s not like repeating yourself over and over again. You’re just reinventing all these different things, so that was a really great challenge for us and it just kept us on our toes the whole time.” Watch our exclusive video interview with Pink above.
“Lovecraft Country” tells the story of a young African-American man in the 1950s (Jonathan Majors) whose father goes missing. But that’s just the starting point for a mystery full of horrors both supernatural and mundane as he unravels his family history while contending with the everyday monsters of American racism during the Jim Crow era. All the while it weaves elements of sci-fi, fantasy, and adventure into its complex narrative.
“This was the first time I’ve ever done a television series, so I haven’t had the opportunity to journey with characters like this before,” Pink explains about developing character styles and personalities over 10 episodes. “It kind of happens in real time. You’re fitting one or two episodes at a time so you’re actually seeing what they’re becoming, and as they’re evolving you’re evolving your idea of what they are with them. So it was a really great opportunity to be closer to the characters.”
It was also an opportunity to explore different eras as the story expands, as in the episode “I Am,” which Pink earned a Costume Designers Guild Award nomination for and brings the character Hippolyta (Aunjanue Ellis) into the past and then thrusts her ahead into the future. Such twists “kept us excited and curious because everything was changing. We’re used to the ’50s, and then we’re going to the ’30s. Then we’re going to the ’20s. Then we’re going to the future. So it was really juicy creatively.”
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