Moulin Rouge was a high budget movie directed by Baz Luhrmann and released globally in 2001. Set in the 1890s in the Moulin Rouge in Paris, the film is a 'red carpet' theatrical production starrring Nicole Kidman and Ewan McGregor. Luhrmann and his partner Catherine Martin were first inspired by Bollywood movies when they conceived the project.
The fourteen key Moulin Rouge costumes, props and continuity books, are a magnificent example of the work of a talented team of Australian designers and costumiers working under director, Baz Luhrmann, with his partner Catherine Martin and costume designer Angus Strathie. In all 450 costumes were designed and made for the production and another 350 costumes were hired or 'found' for the eighteen principals and seventy dancers. The film involved many levels of complexity in its development and a large number of talented people in all areas of cinematography, choreography, musical composition, sets, props and costumes. The movie was heavily promoted online, in magazines and publications. The characters represented in this costume selection are Satine played by Nicole Kidman, Christian played by Ewan McGregor, the Unconscious Argentinian played by Jacek Koman, Harold Zidler played by Jim Broadbent, Toulouse Lautrec played by John Leguizamo and five can can dancers. The Pink Diamonds outfit is a pink diamente corselet with ostrich feather skirt worn by Satine, played by Nicole Kidman.
The Moulin Rouge costumes are the second group of Luhrmann's film costumes represented in the Museum's collection. The complete set from Luhrmann's first movie 'Strictly Ballroom' was featured in a Powerhouse Museum exhibition in 1991. The exhibition of these costumes, 'Spectacular! Spectacular! On the set of Moulin Rouge', held in 2001 was an enormous success with 10,000 people visiting during the first weekend. The costumes are extravagant and beautifully made and they admirably represent the skills and talents of the many Australians involved.