June 28, 2013
Created by Ann Biderman, “Ray Donovan” is Showtime’s new drama series. The show, which takes place in Los Angeles, focuses on Ray Donovan (played by Liev Schreiber), who is a “fixer,” doing the dirty work for the city’s rich and famous. He begins to experience his own problems when his father, Mickey Donovan (played by Jon Voight), is unexpectedly released from prison after serving 20 years for a crime for which he was framed.
“From the high-powered, high-styled world that Ray navigates, to the south Boston family, Southie gangsters, LA crack moms and general ‘Angeleno low-lifes’ (who are often high-styled as well), the look of the show varies greatly,” says the show’s Costume Designer, Christopher Lawrence, who also credits Trish Summerville, who designed the pilot and laid a beautiful foundation of character design from which to build.
One particular costume detail that stands out in Lawrence’s mind is a garment worn by Mickey Donovan (Voight). “Mickey is a low level criminal who comes into some money and buys a new jacket. The money was in the script, a new jacket was not, but I wanted to update Mickey from the iconic leather Members Only jacket that Trish put him in for the pilot, move him out of the 80s but still stay in character,” Lawrence says.
After searching for an iconic piece that would suit the character, Lawrence stumbled upon the perfect jacket at the LACOSTE store in the Beverly Center. As he describes, “it is an amazing satin baseball jacket with a tiger and a crocodile embroidered on the chest. I felt Mickey would respond to it because of the shine and the call back to Japanese military souvenir jackets.” He also felt that it would be right for the character because Mickey is not only incredibly vain, but also a master manipulator.
Voight, who is extremely involved in every aspect of his character, was able to appreciate Lawrence’s vision although he thought “it would be hard to find the right time to introduce such a unique piece,” Lawrence says. Ann Biderman, “Ray Donovan” creator and showrunner, also agreed with Lawrence’s selection and fortunately soon after, the right scene and occasion for Mickey to wear the jacket presented itself.
“The color and shine of the jacket, the highs and lows of the embroidery made for an incredibly cinematic moment. It was an amazing collaboration of costume, cinematography, writing and acting,” Lawrence says.
The first season of “Ray Donovan” will debut on Showtime this Sunday, June 30, 2013.