Lights, Camera, Fashion

12 movies that changed how people dressed

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deepika ranvir ram leela

Leena Hassan

Fashion and the world of cinema are so intertwined that it’s impossible to overlook their relationship. In fact, film is where fashion is immortalized; where ordinary actors and actresses become stars and icons.

From Cher’s killer closet in Clueless to dazzling costumes in Ram Leela, we take a look at 12 movies that have influenced fashion in one way or another.

1. Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961)

Breakfast at Tiffany's

Breakfast at Tiffany’s will always be remembered for two things: Audrey Hepburn and that iconic black dress! Which girl hasn’t channeled her inner Audrey with a LBD and pearls on Halloween?

2. Grease (1978)


From T-Birds’ leather bombers to Pink Ladies’ poodle skirts, there’s no shortage of fifties fashion in this hit musical.It also features one of film’s most iconic transformations – Sandy ditching her retro ponytail and demure sweaters, for killer red mules and skin-tight black catsuit in the infamous final scene.

3. Clueless (1995)

clueless alicia silverstone

The ever-so-loveable Cher may have been clueless when it came to affairs of the heart, but her fashion game was always spot on.  From matchy-matchy suits, slinky Calvin Klein slips and interactive closets to, “You don’t understand, this is an Alaïa!” Clueless has everything a 90s fashion lover could ask for in one stylishly packaged 97-minute film.

4. Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (1998)



Kuch Kuch Hota Hai’s fashion may seem outdated now, but that doesn’t change the fact that the film changed every aspect of college dressing. All those Gap sweatshirts, Polo Sport tees, and Tommy Hilfiger bag packs suddenly made going to college a lot more fashionable.

5. Zoolander (2001)

The world’s hottest male model isn’t just “really, really, really good-looking,” he also happens to be really, really really stylish.


6. The Devil Wears Prada (2006)

The Devil Wears Prada

Since its release in 2006, The Devil Wears Prada has become the quintessential fashion flick for our generation. Inspired by Vogue Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour, the movie is filled with stylish moments but Andy Sach’s (Anne Hathaway) makeover is particularly memorable. Even Giselle gave props to the once-mousy assistant’s new Chanel boots and runway-worthy bangs!

7. Marie Antoinette (2006)

Sofia Coppola lets us eat cake with confectionery costumes and decadent sets, all to the tune of $40 million. Milena Canonero’s 18th century party dresses and formal gowns have rarely, if ever, been matched for their sheer bravado.

8. Atonement (2007)


Like Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Atonement is another film featuring an iconic dress —Keira Knightley’s emerald-green gown. The gown has quite rightly been voted the best film costume of all time! From its glowing colour to flawless fit, everything about it is perfection.

9. Aisha (2010)


Based on Jane Austen’s Emma, Aisha was a breath of fresh air. While Sonam Kapoor’s wardrobe from Dior, Chanel and Lacroix was nothing to sniff about, it was the white and silver Anamika Khanna lehenga that left us enthralled.

10. The Great Gatsby (2013)

With Baz Luhrmann’s grandiose vision and Miuccia Prada’s involvement in the costume designs, you’d be forgiven for expecting a decadent fashion feast. The designer reworked dresses from the Prada and MiuMiu archives, and collaborated with the wardrobe team on the rest of the featured pieces to transport us to the Roaring Twenties: we’re talking furs, feathers, flapper dresses and sequins aplenty!

11. Ram-Leela (2013)

deepika ranvir ram leela

A Sanjay Leela Bansali film is always a visual treat. From Ranveer’s frock coats to Deepika’s Gujarati lehengas, designer Anjum Modhi’s costumes truly brought the movie to life. We can thank this film for bringing vibrant colours, patchwork blouses and ghagracholis back in a big way!

12. Ho Man Jahaan (2015)


This coming of age smash featured a star-studded cast impeccably dressed by Feeha Jamshed, Ismail Farid and Umar Sayeed. Each character had their own signature look topped off with fun accessories (just take a look at Mahira’s pink bangles and Sheheryar Munawar’s brooches!). Mahira’s gorgeous saffron gharara and fully hand-worked choli along with the men’s colourful kurtas had us hitting the rewind button during Shakar Wandaan.

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