My Avalon (GITS, Jin-Roh) Costume & Props project

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Birdie

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I discovered the movie Avalon last year when I was tracking down work by Japanese director Mamouri Oshii of Ghost in the Shell anf Jin-Roh fame. Avalon is one of Oshii's few live action works, and was shot in Poland with a Polish cast & crew.

Avalon is the story of Ash, a young woman who lives in a dreary future world, where the only escape from the drudgery of day to day life is the illegal VR game, Avalon.

Ash is the top solo player and manages to earn a decent living playing the game. No-one knows why Ash's crack team 'Wizard' broke up, but it has to with the mysterious 'Class Real', a glitch in the system that allows a player to achieve indefinite experience points. Class Real is almost impossible to achieve, and carries the risk of causing the player to end up in a vegative coma.

Ash is determined to find Class Real and find out what happened to her old team-maste Murphy, no matter what the risk.

Oshii has stated that Avalon is his response to the Wachowski's 'borrowing' from GITS and creates multiple layers of reality. What is 'real' is open to the interpretation of the viewer. Avalon is a beautiful and stylish movie, shot on grainy brown tinted filmstock, and rich in prop and costume design that draws heavily on eastern block militaria and Arthurian legend.

When I watched Avalon the first time, I immediateley wanted to replicate some of the props - maybe Ash's night vision goggles and the Avalon game card.

After getting hold of the deluxe French DVD, with five hours of behind the scenes material and reference, one thing lead to another, and I found myself investing in a mannequin and reproducing Ash's entire game costume, weapons and paraphenalia.

Costume

Ash's hood appears to be custom made for the movie. The closest match I could find was a US Army cold weather hood. I basically had to learn to sew to modify this hat, which was no mean feat.

I cut and sewed the panels that cover her face using fabric from a US army jacket, sewed various straps, buttons and velcro, and eventually came up with something that looked pretty good.

I recognized the body suit used in the movie as a Mig fighter pressure suit, and managed to pick one up from an Israeli ebay vendor. I dyed the suit and hat grey. The hat didn't look right, so it went to black. The colours I used on the costume were idealized, some way between the colours seen in the behind-the scenes footage, and what looked accurate to the film stock in the movie.

For Ash's 'rank' stripes, I came up with an odd solution. I had tried ribbon, died strips of material and even fabric paint, and nothing looked right. I eventually stumbled on using spray painted computer IDE cable.

The cape, boots, webbing belt and drop pistol holster were all off the shelf.














Night-Vision Goggles

The goggles were based on a pair of flip-top welding goggles with various greeblies attached, mostly made from styrene, and sprayed silver.



Weapons

Ash's weapon of choice within the Avalon game is a Russian Dragunov sniper rifle. This presented me with a few problems. The cheapest replica available in the UK was around £300 from Relics (probably a piece of crap) or a £500 airsoft.

Eventually I managed to find a knockoff airsoft AK sniper, with more or less the correct receiver and barrel setup. I picked up a real set of Dragunov barrel shrouds for £16 from Ebay. I sawed off the sniper stock, and added a cut down Choat stock. The mag is actually an old cut-down Steyr Aug airsoft mag. Total cost £70.



Ash's sidearm is a Walther PPK. I picked up a nice Marushin replica for cheap from Ebay.



Ash also uses a Mauser C96 with a stock to 'shoot the ghost' and a Mauser HSC when she's in Class Real. I'll probably pick these up when finances allow :)

Game Card and Money

The Avalon game card is used to store all the gamers stats and apparently also functions as a credit card.
I cast the card from tinted clear resin with the logo and circuit board printed on acrylic and imbedded. The money seen in the film is a real Polish 20,000 Zloty note (around $6,500). Fortunately I found one online :)



Some pics from the movie:













 

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Soundwave

Sr Member
That looks well cool, been meaning to catch the film for ages now, I'm assuming you'd recommend the film. You know the costume reminds me of Mara Jade for some reason.
Nice display tho. I really like it, thanks for sharing.
 

Birdie

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I'm assuming you'd recommend the film.[/b]
It's a great movie :)

It makes a very cool companion piece to The Matrix, it shares many of the 1st movie's speculations on reality, particularly the idea of whether a pleasant artificial existence is preferable to a grim reality.

The movie looks like nothing else I've seen. My only complaint is that the Avalon game is very engrossing and exciting, and you want to see more of it, how it's played, the rules etc.

Oshii makes awesome use of CG in the movie too, within the games itself.
 

xeno

Sr Member
saw the movie a few years back after picking up a cheap DVD :)
sadly no extra's
it's pretty good, and nice to see something diff then the hollywood crap.

you did a great job on all of it, finally something diff then trooper costumes
(ducking for cover :lol)

Xeno
 

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