Amber Heard

Look of the Week: Amber Heard makes a splash at the Aquaman premiere

Contributed by
Dec 2, 2018

Welcome back to Look of the Week, celebrating the best in TV and film sartorial excellence, past and present across sci-fi, horror, fantasy, and other genre classics!

The end of the year is a busy time on the red carpet. Not only is award season kicking into gear, but a number of blockbuster movies are also hoping to score end-of-year box office success.

Hitting it out of the park sartorially is one way to make sure your movie is talked about, and Amber Heard is taking a page out of Ezra Miller’s book by leaning into the theme of the franchise with her choice of ensemble. Instead of displaying flame-haired locks to match her warrior queen character, Mera, Heard is going for a completely different swimming inspired lewk and it is a stunner.

Amber Heard

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At the world premiere of Aquaman in London, Heard made a splash (I’m sorry) in a stunning Valentino fall 2018 Haute Couture gold and green gown. First seen on the Paris runway in July, Heard chose to wear the embroidered floral swim cap that was part of the original styling. This could be a literal look too far, but Heard going full aquatic via her accessorizing takes this already stunning frock to the next level  — fashion fantasy at its very best.

Aquaman

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And what better way to celebrate a movie like Aquaman than with a huge dollop of dreamy couture? When discussing this collection, Valentino creative director Pierpaolo Piccioli described it as “Renaissance meets Versailles meets ’60s whatever.” He also pointed out the role of couture is that it “involves a deeper and more intimate perspective, to go further into your own vision of beauty.” Couture celebrates the grand, a flight of fancy into a realm of clothing, which is far from every day.

Superhero movies also dare to dream big, so a certain parallel can be drawn here. If Heard had chosen not to wear the swim cap, the gown would still look fantastic, but the cap elevates it. It is like adding a cape to a costume — this collection also happens to have a stunning green sequin cape, if any superheroes want to go high-end.

Amber Heard

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Fancy swimming hats have a long history in fashion and the water, from minimalist chic — Keira Knightley in the 1930s set Atonement is a good example of this — to prime placement on the cover of Harper’s Bazaar in the 1950s. And this isn’t just a vintage Harper’s Bazaar accessory choice, as model Kim Noorda wore a floral canary cap for the Dutch version of the magazine earlier this year. Miu Miu also featured a number of funky embellished swim caps in the spring 2017 RTW collection. Beachwear from the 1950s and synchronized swimming are not the only images conjured by Heard’s headgear, as there is also a science-fiction angle to be considered.

Spanish designer Paco Rabanne had a penchant for space-age looks using materials such as vinyl, metallics, and sequins to give off a space helmet vibe. This headwear is very much swim attire adjacent, showing the fine line between caps for the water and caps for the sky — or at least a version of space travel as Rabanne created the iconic Barbarella costumes, which aren't really what the folks at NASA wore. However, this could very much fall under "‘60s whatever."

Aquaman

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This is a whole lot of dress, but Heard is doing a stellar job showing it off, as well as the gold Brian Atwood sandals peeking out. She wasn't the only one going for a themed accessory as Jason Momoa happily posed with a trident in a low-key leather ensemble.
Jason Momoa

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Karla Welch, Heard’s stylist — and one of the best in this industry — posted not one but three images from this red carpet to Instagram, noting why they kept the water-themed headpiece, “And duh, it’s the Aquaman movie, so obviously we went for the swim cap!” A couple of weeks ago, Welch also chose to shout out the work of stylist Jason Rembert for his collaboration with Ezra Miller and the positive impact these images have.

Having a positive impact is something Heard is taking into consideration with her activism work. Covering the last regular print issue of Glamour magazine, Heard discusses why using her voice in this capacity is so important to her, “My job provides me with a platform. Silence is complacency.” This includes working with Rise founder and 2019 Nobel Peace Prize nominee Amanda Nguyen, who also attended the Emmy Awards with Westworld's Evan Rachel Wood in September.

In 2018, a number of actresses have used their position to amplify voices and starring in a movie like Aquaman gives Heard a wider audience. Nguyen tells the magazine, "It really does go beyond showing up at events. Amber has a true desire to learn how to change the laws and change the world."

Aquaman

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Early reactions to the latest entry into the DCU have been very positive, so that audience looks set to get even bigger. Prior to the world premiere in London, Heard joined Momoa and Aquaman director James Wan in Beijing. Momoa ditched the leather for purple velvet, while Heard opted for a sequin cut-out Celine mini-dress with winged shoulders. It may not have been quite the style statement of Valentino Haute Couture; however, it reveals just how versatile her red carpet attire is.    

Atlantis is Heard's home in Aquaman, but the underwater aesthetic isn't just for sea-dwellers.  

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