The Rundown 2020: Costume Design

For our sixteenth Rundown article, we review the costume design. After the jump, you’ll find our winner and runner-up predictions for Best Costume Design as well as general commentary about the race. Friday, we’ll cover Best Directing. (Editor’s Note: Tripp submitted his commentary and predictions after posting. The below has been updated to reflect the changes.

Best Costume Design

Winner Predictions

  • Emma.
  • Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (WL O) (PP R) [New] (TB R) [New] (TL R) [New]
  • Mank
  • Mulan
  • Pinocchio

Runner-Up Predictions

  • Emma. (TL R) [New]
  • Mulan (TB R) [New]
  • Pinocchio (WL R) [New] (PP R) [New]

(color and symbol key at bottom of page)

Wesley Lovell: Traditional winners in this category have been period films like nominee Emma, leading some to believe that it was going to make a surprise showing with a win in the category in spite of the precursors heavily favoring Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom. Anything is possible, but the ostentatious costumes and thematic uses of such in Ma Rainey should be plenty to give the film a strong chance of victory even if it wouldn’t be thought of as a classical type winner. Of course, Emma might still have a chance, but don’t entirely rule out Pinocchio.
Peter J. Patrick: As with Production Design, Costume Design seems to be a category for which most people remember Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom best. However, the clever designs for Pinocchio are almost too good to be ignored.
Tripp Burton: CDG and BAFTA winner Ma Rainey seems like the consensus pick here, but if anything can upset it, it would probably be the lush visuals of Mulan.
Thomas La Tourrette: The consensus has really built around Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom winning this award, with both BAFTA and the guild being the latest to reward it. I do understand that Ann Roth is incredibly well-respected in the community, but I am still surprised at how this film has become the frontrunner. Ma Rainey and her young friend get to show off some nice dresses, but the rest of the wardrobe is mostly men’s everyday gear. Mulan, which did win the guild’s award for fantasy design, Mank, and Emma all had much larger casts and more chances to show off their finery. Even Pinocchio had a more interesting set of costumes. But Ann Roth better be finding a spot for a second Oscar as Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom seems destined to win.


Appears on Four Lists
Appears on Three Lists
Appears on Two Lists

Wesley Lovell Peter Patrick Tripp Burton Thomas LaTourrette
[New] = New Prediction
[Return] = Prior Prediction Returning
(O) = Original Prediction
(R) = Rundown Series

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.