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2007/219/2 Performance costume, sloppy joe and boots, polyester / cotton / sheepskin / suede / rubber, made by Gallop / Alaskimos, Australia / New Zealand, worn by Michael Caton in the film 'The Castle', Australia, 1997. Click to enlarge.

Costume worn by Michael Caton in ‘The Castle’

Made
This costume is significant because it was worn by Michael Caton as Darryl Kerrigan in the first scene of the popular 1997 Australian film comedy 'The Castle'. A renowned character actor, Caton has appeared in many films including 'Strange Bedfellows', 'The Interview', 'The Animal' and 'Monkey Grip'. He has also appeared on television in 'The Flying Doctors', 'Blue Heelers', 'Home and Away', 'A Country Practice', 'Cop Shop', 'Homicide', 'Hot Property' and 'Dancing with the Stars'. He played Uncle Harry in 'The Sullivans'.

Directed by Rob Sitch and produced by Working Dog, which also produced the ground-breaking television satire 'Frontline', 'The Castle' was made on a low budget over five weeks, shot in eleven days and distributed by Village Roadshow. 'The Castle' is the story of a happy, close-knit family of lovable Aussie battlers who win a fight against the odds to stop the compulsory government acquisition of their house to make way for extensions to the neighbouring airport.

A key element of the film's humour is the repetition of catchphrases, including:
'Tell 'em they're dreamin';
'That's going straight to the pool room';
'Suffer in your jocks';
'Get your hand off it, Darryl';
'Ah, the serenity';
and, as an articulation of legal argument in the courtroom, 'Ah... it's just the vibe'.

'The Castle' became one of Australia's most successful films, grossing more than $10 million here, and gained US distribution through Miramax Films. It won an AFI Award for Best Original Screenplay. Michael Caton was nominated for an AFI Award as Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role for his portrayal of Darryl Kerrigan, the father of the Kerrigan family, whose home is his 'castle'. His first appearance in the film, wearing this paint-splattered costume, sets up his character as a man with pride in his home and love for his family. His ugg boots signify a particular Australian lifestyle, as do other Kerrigan family traits such as owning multiple cars, an obsession with sport, the love of a bargain and displaying trophies in the pool room.

The term 'sloppy joe' is applied by Australians to cheap, casual, loose, non-woollen sweaters. The name ugg (or ugh or ug) has long been used by Australians as a generic term for this style of sheepskin boots. The origins of ugg boots are unclear, but they are thought to have first appeared in the 1920s and have been made by a number of manufacturers in Australia and New Zealand. Comfortable and warm, ugg boots were once considered to be 'daggy' but in recent times have become more fashionable.

The trademark 'UGH-BOOTS' was registered in 1971 by an Australian entrepreneur who sold it to Deckers Outdoor Corporation of the USA in 1995. Deckers also has the rights to the word 'UGH' and 'UGG AUSTRALIA'. Reports that Deckers considered litigation against traders of other sheepskin boots using the terms Ugg and Ugh were the subject of public debate and parliamentary discussion in 2004, as many Australians regard the ugg boot as a national icon.

Summary

Object No.

2007/219/2

Object Statement

Performance costume, sloppy joe and boots, polyester / cotton / sheepskin / suede / rubber, made by Gallop / Alaskimos, Australia / New Zealand, worn by Michael Caton in the film 'The Castle', Australia, 1997

Physical Description

Performance costume, comprising sloppy joe and ugg boots, polyester / cotton / sheepskin / suede / rubber, made by Gallop / Alaskimos, Australia / New Zealand, worn by Michael Caton in the film 'The Castle', Australia, 1997

A performance outfit comprising sloppy joe and a pair of ugg boots. The dark pink sweater or 'sloppy joe' is made of polyester and cotton and has fleecy lining, long sleeves and elastic cuffs. Transfer printed on the centre front is the text 'ESC / APE'. The front and arms are stained with light blue and white house paint. The white ugg boots are made of yellow fleecy sheepskin, with a strip of brown suede at back and at front along perimeter of upper, and they have thick brown rubber soles. Right boot has a hole at left front. Signs of heavy wear on soles and uppers. Makers' labels are attached to sloppy joe and ugg boots.

Marks

Labelled inside back of neck with a blue tag with the words 'Get off your high horse / GALLOP / In outback Australia', and a smaller, torn white tag with the words '65% polyester, 35% cotton' and washing instructions.

Maker's label on the side above outer ankle: 'Alaskimos / Made in New Zealand'. Stamped on sole 'ALASKIMOS / 9 / NZ. MADE'.

Production

Notes

Sloppy joe was made by Gallop, probably in Australia, and the ugg boots were made in New Zealand by Alaskimos around 1997.

History

Notes

These items were worn by Michael Caton as Darryl Kerrigan in the first scene of the film comedy 'The Castle'. The boots and sloppy joe belonged to, and had been worn by, Caton before the film was made. He therefore retained them after the film's production. To complete the costume, Caton wore an old pair of black jeans.

Source

Credit Line

Gift of Michael Caton, 2007

Acquisition Date

18 December 2007

Cite this Object

Harvard

Costume worn by Michael Caton in 'The Castle' 2020, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 26 September 2020, <https://ma.as/361216>

Wikipedia

{{cite web |url=https://ma.as/361216 |title=Costume worn by Michael Caton in 'The Castle' |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=26 September 2020 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}

Incomplete

This object record is currently incomplete. Other information may exist in a non-digital form. The Museum continues to update and add new research to collection records.