Have Hollywood Films Influenced the Fashion Since the 50’s

Every person has the freedom to wear any kind of clothes they want to wear, any jewelry they want to show off, any hairstyle they want to have and any shoes they want to use. But some choose to be funkier, sassy and more fashionable. “What you see is what you get”, a cliché that describes the real sense of being fashionable. Fashion is a way of expressing oneself. What you might see in a person on the manner he/she wears a clothes might give you a hint on his/her personality. Sometimes fashion can also be the way of expressing the culture that person has. But nowadays, in anywhere you go and in anywhere you look, there are some people who have the same fashion statement.

You might recognize their fashion statement because it can be seen in the movies, magazine, newspaper and internet web pages. Why? Because these famous fashion statements are being influenced by the Hollywood stars as people see them in the movies even from the year 1950. You might see your own daughter wearing a hanging blouse showing off her pierced navel which is influenced by the controversial Britney Spears. You might also notice you grandparents wear a cowboy’s outfit. People tend to copy the accessories, jewelries, and clothes of their famous movie idol believing that this Hollywood glamour could rub on to them as they copy their fashion statements. It is a person’s nature to feel the feeling of being different. It is also natural to a person watching a movie or films to feel that one of the characters in that movie have the same life situation or characteristics as he/she have. Because of this, after watching, the tendency is that a person would actually feel like he/she was that Hollywood star in that film that could cause him to copy the exact look of the character

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This fashion statement of some Hollywood stars creates images that people would recognize. The fashion statement of Manilyn Monroe for example, portrays a very glamorous, sexy and beautiful lady. Nowadays, even Christina Aguilera copied that fashion statement to look glamorous, sexy and beautiful. The fashion statement of Elvis Presley became very popular to be imitated by some his die hard fans because he became really famous and he was loved by most people. People feel they are also being loved and amazed by other people if they would actually look like the famous superstars.

The perception of beauty was also a reason why people imitate the fashion statement of the famous ones. People believe that Hollywood actors and actresses are the most beautiful personalities. For them they have the perfect look, the perfect life and the perfect outfit. These Hollywood celebrities became the image model of the people nowadays because it is believed that their characteristic reflects the ideal personality which has been idolized by ordinary people.


A film has a duty to give the viewer a wonderful story that can either make them become entertained or make them learn something out of it. According from the book The Mind and the Film by Buckle and Gerard Fort, these motion pictures showed on screen can influence its viewer. A film is a mode of expression of the imaginative mind of a human being sharing stories that that could reveal the true side of the real world and a film can act as a mirror to the society and culture. One of the elements of making a film is the characters of the story. These characters are being played by performers that could portray the characteristic of that character in the story. A film will not be completed without these famous personalities acting on a certain role in it. And as a usual, this personality should be a good looking and presentable because they will serve as an inspiration to the viewer as they watch the film.

Here comes the different fashion statement portrayed by this famous people seen in films. Since the year of 1950, Hollywood films became very famous and almost all of the people start to imitate the fashion statement these Hollywood personalities have. Since 1950’s until now, pencil-shaped skirt, Dress with petticoats Halter dress, Printed dress on white background, pastel print dress, Cotton Dress with cuffed sleeve, Pedal Pushers and the most famous Jeans have been into fashion line worn by different kind of people. This kinds of clothing are just been modified by the designers to create new look. These clothes became really popular because of the influenced made by the Hollywood actors and actresses.

According to Vicki Vasilopoulos, Senior Fashion Editor at the Daily News Records, in every film, it is not actually the character, nor the actor or the actress that played the lead role, it is the style. These clothing worn by this actors and actresses reveals the characteristic of the role they play. She made a top twelve list of movies that became very influential to the fashion world. The number one on her list was the film American Gigolo (1980) where Richard Gere gives way for the public to appreciate Giorgio Armani’s clothing design. This Armani jacket with steel gray silk skirt became very popular to most of the men in 1980. This film gave a strong lesson that can be applicable to the sense of fashion that’s why even the ordinary ones that time appreciated it. The lesson in this film was even if a person belongs in the lower status in the society, he/she can gain the respect and power if he/she will wear the right and presentable clothes to portray a strong characteristic.

Second on the list was The Thomas Crown Affair (1968) with the leading man Steve McQueen being a man who has every luxury a person could dream of. His fashion style as an elegant businessman wearing tubular three-piece suits with side vents and slim trousers was notice and imitated by those people who hold the same characteristic as he have in the role he played. Next to this was the film Goldfinger (1964) where the ever famous James Bond became the fashion icon. Sean Connery became the man behind this 007 agent who wears office attire that really looks so strong and sexy for a guy. That time, the largest tailoring company in England introduced a line of clothes dedicated for this film and it was called 007.

Who could forget the A Hard day’s night (1964) popularize by the Beatles? This became very popular that even the band nowadays portrays the same look and outfit the Beatles have. They popularize the skinny ties, pegged trousers, jackets that are short with four buttons only. Who could deny that the distinctive gray sharkskin stage jackets with black collars was not a very well selling clothes that time. This outfit still influences the people nowadays because of the popularity achieved by the Beatles. Another film that really makes a mark on the fashion sense is the Saturday Night Fever (1977) giving way for John Travolta to show off his talents in dancing as well as the famous clothes like the bell-bottoms pants, white suit, a leather jacket with a black color and a gold medallion necklace.. Vasilopoulos said “John Travolta made white polyester suits an instant fashion craze”. The number nine of her list is The Wild One (1953). In this film, the famous leather jacket use in motorcycle combined with denim jeans and a ringer T-shirt became very popular especially to the people in rock world. It seems that this fashion sense really portrays a strong attitude showed by Brando I the role that he played.

Whitney Teal, the columnist of Life and Style for the Hilltop says  that the future fashion seems to be promoted because of this popular films always seen or showed in the television.  She also said that from the knit cardigans of Marc Jacobs to the fuller skirts worn by most of the women popularized by Diane von Furstenberg, this stars from 50’s give inspiration to the future fashion.

The Wild One, Grease, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Saturday night fever, Footloose, Clueless Desperately Seeking Susan, …And God Created Woman, Reservoir Dogs, Legally Blonde and Factory Girl are some of the films that really influenced the fashion sense and style of everyone. The Legally Blonde marks the use of the color pink and the sassy style of clothes but still looking smart, casual, sexy and pretty.

Some contradicts the idea that Hollywood films like the sophomore international business major Ameerah Harris who says that she doesn’t believe that this fashion trends are being set up by theis arising films. According to Latrice Jones, a sophomore accounting major, films or movies doesn’t create fashion trends but because of seeing it almost everywhere, it helps that fashion trend to develop and become more popular.


Fashion is the freedom of expressing oneself to show your own personality to the world. Hollywood films played a big part on establishing and developing the different fashion statement being imitated by ordinary people. These Hollywood actors and actresses became the inspiration of some fashion statement because they portray a strong characteristic of the role they play in a certain film. For other, films can influenced the fashion trend because of the glamour world the Hollywood people have and the ordinary people tend to imitate what is “in” and what is popular. Because of being seen regularly, it became famous that is why people get use to the style they see. But whether you look like a star, you look like Elvis Presley, etc, fashion is freedom so it’s your choice on who you want to be like or be unique as you are.