Press: Sofia Boutella Talks Dressing for the Red Carpet and Working with Tom Cruise

 

VOGUE – Sofia Boutella may be the red carpet’s most exciting new face. Set to storm theaters this weekend in the blockbuster reboot of The Mummy franchise, Boutella has made waves during her first global press tour in designer looks that showcase her dancer’s physique and willingness to take a fashion risks. Whether arriving at the Madrid premiere in silver Miu Miu last month, stunning fans in a crimson Valentino in Mexico City on Monday, or taking to the red carpet in Taiwan wearing custom Prada, Boutella has pulled off a range of arresting looks in a short period of time.

Making a stop in New York last night at Saks Fifth Avenue’s party in honor of its window display featuring the movie’s costumes, Boutella continued her winning streak in a sequined Rodarte cocktail dress. Joined by co-star and recent Emmy-winner Courtney B. Vance and director Alex Kurtzman, she offered a preview of the dramatic looks she wore onscreen and shared her thoughts on getting glamorous with the whole world watching. Here, her take on why she’s a tomboy at heart and what it was like to work with her leading man, Tom Cruise.

 

On the creation of The Mummy’s costumes

 

“I love the process of how the costumes were made. I remember putting on the drapey mummy costume and being so impressed. It is basically just these squares of silk with different patterns and prints on them. There was a stylist on set with us who was just wrapping them around me, creating shapes as she went and trying things out. [Afterwards,] we decided which one we were going to use based on what she had done. It was interesting just to watch, to get into the costumes, and do the multiple makeup tests.”

 

On choosing her premiere looks with stylist Karla Welch

 

“I have never done an international tour like this before, so for me it is really about discovering and learning as I go. I wanted to keep something quite romantic, glamorous, and a bit old-school Hollywood [in the looks]. I love all of the old Hollywood stars from the ’40s and ’50s, and I wanted to have that same sense of elegance. I love this [Rodarte] look because I think it has an unusual cut and is different. It’s very original. I love the sequins, they’re fun, and it just feels good.

 

I try to be open; there are a lot of brands I love, Prada, Miu Miu, Valentino. I love Chanel and it would have been wonderful to wear a look from them during this tour, but with Cannes happening that was difficult. We started in Sydney with a great look by Prabal Gurung, and everything has been wonderful from then on.”

 

On working with Tom Cruise

 

“I had such a great time being on set with Tom. He’s incredible, and I learned so much from him. He has such an admirable work ethic and is so generous; he loves cinema so much. This film gave me the opportunity to walk in the footsteps of Boris Karloff over 80 years after he had made the [character of] the Mummy iconic–that was incredible for me.”

 

On embracing her feminine side

 

“When I was a dancer I was such a tomboy; I always had plaid shirts around my waist and shorts with holes in them. I still have those clothes in my closet and sometimes I feel like wearing them, but I’ve also started to dress much more feminine. I think that grew on me and as I’ve gotten older I’ve wanted to embrace that side of myself.”

 

On bringing an iconic character to life

 

“Making the movie was an intense experience, but it was an honor for me that [director] Alex [Kurtzman] thought of about me for the role. I love him for giving this part to a woman because it’s a strong, powerful role, one that means a lot to me in that sense. I was humbled by the opportunity.”

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