How Not to Wear a Hat, Gangster Squad Edition


How to look like a hayseed just off the farm in really expensive clothes, as demonstrated by Sean Penn in “Gangster Squad,” costume design by Mary Zophres. Why does Hollywood have such a difficult time with men’s hats?

About lmharnisch

I am retired from the Los Angeles Times
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13 Responses to How Not to Wear a Hat, Gangster Squad Edition

  1. lray987Lynne Ray says:

    Couldn’t have happened to a worthier actor. Maybe Mary knew exactly what she was doing when she plopped that topper on Mr. Penn…


  2. Gregory Moore says:

    Maybe a topic for your next entry: How Not to Costume an Actor in a Collar 2 1/2 Sizes Too Big. As for the hat, in the case of Penn, I can imagine this 900-pound gorilla telling Ms. Zophres, “NO! THIS Is the way they wore ’em!” Game over.


  3. aryedirect says:

    A Dasher, but not a Haber.


  4. Earl Boebert says:

    Prime example of the burlesque comic school of headgear …


  5. LC says:

    Actors really should get to know their hats awhile before they wear them in front of the camera!


  6. C. Morales says:

    Escpecially ironic since I think Sean Penn is playing Mickey Cohen; Cohen was a clothes horse, who changed suits several times a day and at one point owned a haberrdashery on the Strip.


  7. JAMES SCOTT says:

    Maybe they should read “The way you wear your hat.” about Frank Sinatra’s clothing style. But if you watch 1940’s movies you’ll notice the hero wears his hat correctly. The comedy relief sidekick wears his hat to look funny.


  8. Maybe it is a poor attempt to emulate the character, “Popeye” Doyle, in the motion picture, “The French Connection?”


  9. Stacia says:

    I just watched The Footloose Heiress, and Hugh O’Connell’s character wore his hat exactly this way, the upturned brim always meaning either hayseed or goofball (O’Connell being the latter). I can’t imagine how this escaped the costume designers, unless they just went with still photos of Eddie Cantor or Charles Ruggles or something.


  10. aryedirect says:

    Too many wardrobe people working today have little knowledge of the coded messages in fedora choice and wearing style were. It was a very rich, non-verbal, language.


  11. percival S Ramirez says:

    well. to those who dont really have any idea about wearing Vintage stuff..its ok but not for us vintage enthusiast. its ok for those Johnny Come lately guys..


  12. Pingback: Black Dahlia: ‘I Am the Night’ – My Head Is Already Exploding |

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