Who is Deena Appel?……..
Deena Appel spent the early part of her career in retail, working as a buyer for two clothing chains which served as great training.
“As a buyer, I had to separate myself from my own taste. It was about the customer, not me. Costume design is similar but, instead of thinking in the mindset of one customer, you’re thinking in terms of an 80-year-old man, a 6-year-old boy or a beautiful woman.”
Turning to costume design, Deena Appel has worked on in excess of 30+ movies and TV show (initial movie being “The girl with a crazy brother), including the most famous Austin Powers. Her vibrant wardrobe for “Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery” (1997) helped spawn the film’s cult following especially in ’60s-style dress
“A costume designer’s job is to serve the script; the work should be undetected, seamless with the character,”
“But the world we created from Mike’s (Myers) imagination was in-your-face about the look. It afforded me a tremendous opportunity to show off.”
As a board member of the Costume Designers Guild, Appel is working with other costume designers to gain credit on merchandise made from movie and tv series characters.
“These creative minds don’t see a dime of profit. And it’s the same story for just about every costume designer in Hollywood. It’s all of them. Every movie you can think of.” Appel notes.
“Studios are essentially saying, ‘Design the clothes for the film and we’ll take what you do and put it into a completely different industry – the retail world. And you’re not going to get anything from it,'” adds Appel
“When ‘Austin Powers’ became dolls, Halloween costumes and board games, and it went on for years, not only am I not compensated for that in any way, shape or form, I am not even credited for it.”