Meghan Kasperlik interview: ‘Moon Knight’ costume designer
“If I’m not learning, then it’s not worth doing the job,” admits two-time Emmy-nominated costume designer Meghan Kasperlik (“Fahrenheit 451” and “Mare of Easttown”) about being thrown in the deep end on one of the ambitious “Moon Knight.” For our recent webchat she adds, “I was able to do so much creatively and then to see it transform and actually come to life with the performances of the amazing actors,” she declares. “It just is really the whole team, I mean I’m one person, the whole team did a phenomenal job, so I am really proud of the work that we did, and that the reaction that people are having towards that is really phenomenal.” Watch our exclusive video interview above.
“Moon Knight” was created by Jeremy Slater (“The Umbrella Academy”), based on the Marvel comics featuring the character of the same name. Slater collaborated with Egyptian helmer Mohammed Diab (who shepherded four of the six episodes) on the Disney Plus limited series, the sixth TV production in Phase Four of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, following “WandaVision,” “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier,” “Loki,” “What If…?” and “Hawkeye.”
SEE our dozens of interviews with 2022 Emmy contenders
Oscar Isaac stars as Marc Spector (a.k.a. Moon Knight) and Steven Grant (a.k.a. Mr. Knight), two alters of a man with dissociative identity disorder (who we eventually learn is joined by a third alter, the mysterious Jake Lockley). Marc is a ruthless mercenary who becomes Moon Knight, the avatar (i.e. the manifestation of a deity in bodily form on earth) for the Egyptian moon god Khonshu, with his alter Steven, a mild-mannered British gift-shop employee who becomes Mr. Knight, Steven’s persona when he is Khonshu’s avatar. The series co-stars May Calamawy as Spector’s estranged wife Layla El-Faouly (who later becomes the Scarlet Scarab), Ethan Hawke as villain Harrow and F. Murray Abraham, who voices the moon god Khonshu. “Moon Knight” premiered March 30 to critical acclaim and strong word-of-mouth, scoring an impressive “fresh” rating of 88% on Rotten Tomatoes, with critics reserving special praise for Isaac and the show’s impressive production values and darker tone.
“When I came in, I was super excited, but then I felt a little bit of the pressure because it’s not just the MCU, it’s the MCU fans and you know that there are going to be a lot of critiques,” Kasperlik reveals about how seriously she took this assignment, ensuring that every single detail in the Moon Knight and Mr. Knight costume was just right. “I wanted to make it new and exciting and something that we haven’t seen before, especially with the Moon Knight costume. I took a little bit of a chance with it, having so many different layers.”
In addition to the title character, Kasperlik was responsible for not only all of the contemporary looks worn by the characters in London and Cairo, but also her elaborate designs for each of the gods themselves, which were then recreated for CGI characters inhabiting the world of “Moon Knight.” Kasperlik says her crowning achievement was the Egyptian goddess Tawaret, the benevolent protector of fertility and childbirth, who appears in her god-like manifestation as a life-size, sweet-talking, bipedal hippopotamus. “I love so many of them, but Tawaret was really a stunning sight to see,” Kasperlik admits. It was “something I was really so proud of. It was made all in-house, so I had an in-house metal-smith, I had an in-house leather worker and they were constructing and making hieroglyphs that were hand-pounded into the leather the all the jewelry was handmade by the metal-smith.”