Lo­cal lass dressed for suc­cess in Hol­ly­wood

CityPress - - News - NA­DIA NEO­PHY­TOU news@city­press.co.za

When The Walk­ing Dead sham­bles back on to our screens to­mor­row, the char­ac­ters’ wardrobes will once again be straight out of South Africa – the cos­tume de­signer for the se­ries was born, raised and ed­u­cated in Cape Town be­fore she hit the big time in Hol­ly­wood.

Eu­lyn Womble joined the se­ries as a cos­tu­mier in its first sea­son and was pro­moted in the sec­ond. She says she still has to pinch her­self to con­firm it’s not a dream. “We just had the premiere in Los An­ge­les this past week and it was so much fun. It’s so amaz­ing to be sur­rounded by all th­ese peo­ple whose work you ad­mire, and you’re busy telling them how tal­ented and won­der­ful they are, and they’re busy telling you the same thing!” she told City Press dur­ing a break be­tween fit­tings.

Au­di­ences have been hooked on The Walk­ing Dead since 2010. The se­ries fol­lows the story of a group of peo­ple bat­tling to sur­vive a zom­bie in­fes­ta­tion.

Womble’s cos­tumes have helped in­form the ac­tors’ un­der­stand­ing of their char­ac­ters. She, in turn, says she draws in­spi­ra­tion from the ac­tors’ own per­son­al­i­ties and styles.

For the character Mi­chonne, a fan favourite played by Danai Gurira, Womble used African-in­spired prints and colours to flash back to life be­fore the apoc­a­lypse. Gurira’s par­ents are Zim­bab­wean.

“Sea­son five has been more chal­leng­ing than usual, and you’ll soon see why,” she says, not will­ing to give any­thing away.

“But we roll with the punches. Be­ing a South African, I know how to do that. That’s what we’ve learnt to do.”

The Heath­field, Cape Town-born Womble stud­ied ac­count­ing at the Univer­sity of Cape Town after ma­tric­u­lat­ing in 1994. But she al­ways wanted to be a de­signer and spent many school hol­i­days work­ing in her grand­mother’s cloth­ing fac­tory and on in­ter­na­tional pro­duc­tion sets in the Mother City – where she met her Amer­i­can hus­band Caleb. He’s now The Walk­ing Dead’s pro­duc­tion su­per­vi­sor.

Oc­to­ber 31 is ap­proach­ing, and the show’s cast and crew take Hal­loween very se­ri­ously. They dress up and award each other prizes for the best cos­tumes. Her ad­vice for those mark­ing the spooky hol­i­day this year?

“Zom­bies are al­ways trend­ing, ev­ery year,” she chuck­les. “But re­al­ity TV cou­ples are fun to do too. What­ever you de­cide to wear, though, just re­mem­ber it doesn’t have to be about wear­ing the least amount of cloth­ing. ‘Dress­ing up’ in a neg­ligee is not scary.”

The Walk­ing Dead

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