As you can imagine, we know every frame of The Poseidon Adventure (1972) by heart and have each perfor- mance, vocal nuance and costuming detail practically memorized. Thus, we are quite familiar with the almost iconic clothing that designer Paul Zastupnevich placed upon the shoulders of his cast during their fiery and watery ordeal. We recall Ernest Borgnine's pink tux shirt (later to be found on Stella Stevens!), Shelley Winters' chiffon dress, Carol Lynley's hot pants and so on. Then there are the earlier, more brief, scenes such as the church service given by Gene Hackman up on deck.
For this windy occasion, Pamela Sue Martin donned a yellow and white cape with a distinctive closure at the neck.
You'll recall that earlier in her cabin, she was seen wearing a yellow blouse and white skirt as she and her brother Eric Shea tussled around about a telegram from their parents, not to mention about going to the church service itself ("Why don't you SHOVE IT!"), so this cape was a fully coordinated accent to her ensemble.
Without realizing it, though, Ms. Martin was being quite fashion forward in her selection of this cape. You see, it was not just a run-of-the-mill item from a store in 1972, but actually a piece of clothing from the far-flung future of 2053, a time we haven't yet reached even now!
The year before Poseidon, Irwin Allen produced a TV pilot called City Beneath the Sea (1971.) The futuristic series, about an underwater compound run by Stuart Whitman and a variety of other subordinates, was not picked up, but the pilot saw release as a feature film in the United Kingdom.
One of his undersea cohorts, Rosemary Forsyth, sports a variety of candy-colored mini- dresses, such as this yellow one with cut-out sleeves.
When she's traipsing through the presumably nippy hallways of the underwater city Pacifica, however, she sports a coordinated cape that fits over her yellow dress. Yep, you guessed it! The very same one that later turned up on Martin in Poseidon.
Here's a close-up look at the detail on that neck-closure.
Forsyth blames Whitman for the accidental death of her husband, which is why she appears so dour in this series of shots.
It's fun that we can take a look at costumer Zastupnevich going green and recycling a bit of clothing from a prior project. As the shipboard church scene in Poseidon is comparatively brief, it was likely determined not to spend too much time or money on clothing for Martin in that fleeting instance. We end with a candid photo taken aboard the Queen Mary (stand-in for the S.S. Poseidon) on the day that scene was filmed.
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"Oh, and for those who are looking for fascinating, funny, often outré online reading about vintage, sometimes obscure, movies, TV shows and stars, try the blog, “Poseidon’s Underworld.” You’ll find everything from detailed and witty biographies to posts on how stars wore their clothes — or didn’t — as each show biz decade constricted or loosened up. Heavily illustrated and highly informative". - Liz Smith - Liz Smith - newyorksocialdiary.com
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