This Day In 1925: The Great Gatsby Published

Today in 1925 F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby” was published. A cage-match between old money and new, it is regarded as the greatest American novel by many literary critics.

As you’ve probably heard, a new film adaptation is scheduled to be released this year on Christmas Day. It is directed by Baz Luhrmann and will be in 3-D. I suspect that the common reaction of “Why 3-D?” is precisely the reason for it.

Pictured above are Joel Edgerton and Toby McGuire as the film’s two Yalies.

Should’ve had Ralph make the clothes, as he did the last time around. — CC

30 Comments on "This Day In 1925: The Great Gatsby Published"

  1. Looks like they were tailored by Etch-A-Sketch.

  2. Those two guys’ attire seems inconsistent to me. The 1920’s saw fuller pants with pleats and creases. Possibly more padded shoulders in the jackets. Low cut and two tone shoes were coming into fashion. Spats would be worn with boots.

    The straw boater would be worn only in summer. Unless I’m mistaken, those crappy looking clothes look like winter weight. Imagine working in an office without A/C in July wearing that junk. The boss would send you home to change into something appropriate.

    If that picture is representative of the movie, stay home and rent the Redford version. Toby would look more correct as Spiderman.

  3. Barry Prudom | April 10, 2012 at 1:54 pm |

    It looks like Hollywood-style historical revision is hitting this film, too. The Great Gatsby Meets Steampunk. Strange.

  4. Michael Mattis | April 10, 2012 at 3:32 pm |

    Agreed with Duke for the most part, but more padding in the shoulders?

  5. I’ve been against this film ever since I heard those effetes DiCaprio and McGuire were cast. Hell, Brad Pitt would make a better Gatsby than Leo. Looking at the clothes just upsets me even more. The A&E version was probably better than this.

  6. I do believe these are what were known as ‘jazz suits’.

  7. Old Bostonian | April 10, 2012 at 7:04 pm |

    Outrageously ill-fitting.

  8. As soon as I read a film is directed by Baz Luhrmann it goes into the “not in this lifetime” list.

  9. Well my prophecy is: the wardrobe designer will win an oscar… That is how backwards Hollywood seems these days…

    Although these men lived on East Egg, not west egg…(or was it the other way around… I forget…) you get my point…

  10. brooks brothers did the men, chanel did the women, tiffany did the jewelry
    and moby dick is the greatest american novel

  11. My only complaint here is Everett’s use of “effete.”

    Someone seems threatened by nontraditional gender expression…

  12. you’re right.
    “pussies” would’ve been better.

  13. Kionon, your comment is little more than the grownup version of the “I know you are, but what am I?” schoolyard taunt. Not all men are studmuffins, and it’s OK to point that out.

    One of the reviews I’ve read of the 1974 film version criticized the casting of Bruce Dern as Tom Buchanan, because Buchanan is supposed to be an ex-jock, and Dern is the wrong physical type. (I also thought that Dern was miscast.) Everett is expressing his opinion that DiCaprio and McGuire are also the wrong type, and why. Joel Edgerton might be OK as Buchanan, but I think that McGuire has the wrong voice for Nick Carraway.

    Leo as Jay Gatsby? I don’t think so. Wrong physical type, wrong age, wrong aura. Then again, no one thought that Tom Cruise could be a convincing Lestat, but he was excellent in that role. I can only hope I’m as wrong about DiCaprio as I was about Cruise as Lestat.

  14. Bill Stephenson | April 11, 2012 at 7:09 am |

    It is interesting to look at the journey from the pen of Fitzgerald; to the movie starring Redford and Waterson, to an opera that never gained traction, to the upcoming film which would seem to be a 3D filming of a costume party.

    None of this is meant to denigrate these efforts. It would seem however, to be an illustration of the incredible genius of Fitzgerald to build a character with nothing more than his pen, that caused his reader to totally suspend disbelief.

    For many readers, his writing became stark reality, for the moment.

    Through no fault of theirs, those that have tried to recreate Fitzgerald’s work in film, or opera seems to immediately label them as poseurs.

  15. Henry, I’m not sure what you mean. Everett clearly meant it negatively. I’m perfectly okay with the wide range of body shapes people have, whether they are “studmuffins” or not. Everett appears not to have that view. If he had said, “DiCaprio and Maguire do not fit my understanding of the physical appearance of the characters,” that would have been fine. Instead he essentially questioned their manliness based on how he perceived their physical appearance. That’s not cool.

  16. My understanding was that fuller-cut pants didn’t come into style until a fair bit into the twenties anyway, so at least on that count I can accept these outfits.

  17. Was the picture taken on Pitti Uomo 2012?

  18. I was absolutely talking badly about their body types, but it was in reference to their roles. I did not specify that, so I understand your thinking I was casting dispersions on everyone of a certain height or weight. For many years I was as “effete” (by my use of the word) as Dicaprio on Growing Pains, and even today I’m still not a member of the slim-fit ain’t trad movement.

    To actually elaborate on my post, I do not feel that these individuals really fit their roles, as Henry said. I have loathed Dicaprio’s early roles, but he has really proven himself to be a fine actor, so I am willing to give him a pass based on his acting chops. Maguire though, most of the roles I’ve seen him in cast him as a goofy teenager. Looking at him now, he looks like a goofy teenager wearing a costume. GSTAG’s comment could not have been more spot on.

    Who would be better cast? I have no idea. Luhrmann used Ewan McGregor for Moulin Rouge, so I think he would be a decent Carraway (despite the inherent horror of differing nationalities). Jon Hamm may be too convincing to play the sometimes unsure Gatsby, but I do think he would be would make an excellent Tom. Really though, they should just leave well-enough alone and not make another Gatsby movie.

  19. An excellent summation of your views, Everett, and I accept your original comments with the intent you meant. Few things bother me more than “casting dispersions of everyone of a certain height or weight,” so I usually call people out on it. I recognise now that was not your intention, and thank you for the clarification. I don’t disagree with your assessment.

  20. Kionon,

    It seems you took “effete” as an upscale version of “faggy,” and then you made a “the lady doth protest too much, methinks” comment (specifically, ascribing homosexuality to someone who calls someone else “homo,” or the like).

    My apologies if I misunderstood you.

  21. GSTAG wrote:
    “Was the picture taken on Pitti Uomo 2012?”

    Hilarious! However, had it really been Pitti Uomo, then Edgerton’s tie would have to stick out from the bottom of his vest (tail longer than blade, of course); some of the buttons on their surgeon’s cuffs would have to be unbuttoned; their pants would have to be short enough to display their socklessness; and there would have been some patterns in violent shades.

    And that chain would be much, much longer.

    And they’d both be smoking.

    Like chimneys.

  22. Tom Conroy | April 11, 2012 at 4:23 pm |

    The styling of the clothes does seem inaccurate, at least to my eye. Not the style but the overly tight fit is not true to period. The hats look like the light modern versions of the boater. The real ones were stiff. I don’t claim to be an expert on the period but I have looked at a lot of pictures over the years. No one wore clothes that fit that tight.

  23. Henry, your second clause doesn’t make any sense to me, so I’m going to assume you did misunderstand me, for if you understood me correctly then I would know what you mean, but I don’t. Whatever you accuse me of (and I can’t parse it) is false.

    And no, I wouldn’t place “effete” in the same category as “faggy,” (which is just downright horrible), but the contexts in which I have heard “effete” used have not be kind ones, sexuality having nothing to do with it.

  24. As much as I love “The Great Gatsby” I’m not sure I can bring myself to see this movie. Based on this picture, the costume seem wrong in so many ways. I could be mistaken as I’ve never really studied this era but a pinstripe jacket wouldn’t be paired with non-pinstriped pants, the double breasted vest just looks off as well. The tightness of the pants is another major detractor. I’m also a little annoyed at the current trend of Hollywood to release everything in 3D just for the sake of releasing it in 3D without it being noticeably different from non-3D to my eyes. Perhaps the movie will do justice to this classic, but I’m not holding my breath.

  25. Kionon,

    Let me try again. Everett called DiCaprio and McGuire “effetes.” “Effete” is sometimes used as an oblique way to criticize homosexuals as homosexuals; though I don’t know that that is what Everett meant by it.

    You objected to Everett’s use of “effete,” adding, “Someone seems threatened by nontraditional gender expression…”

    This sounded to me like a sophisticated variant on the “latent” insult sometimes hurled at those who criticize homosexuals for their homosexuality.

    Again, my apologies if I misread you. To quote Hobbes (of Calvin & Hobbes fame), “Maybe someday we can make language a total impediment to understanding.”

    Point of agreements:
    * “Faggy” and “effete” are not synonyms.
    * This latest incarnation of Gatsby seems to suffer from miscasting in some roles.


  26. What a lot of horseshit. Everett never said he though they looked gay. Effete is this case meaning dilettantes. It isn’t always about you Henry.

  27. Dutch Uncle | April 13, 2012 at 7:42 am |


    The masses have understood “effete” to mean “effeminate” since at least the time of Spiro Agnew.

  28. Henry,

    Gender expression != sexuality. The two are not necessarily connected. They often are in the public eye, but that says more about the people who think they are than those who know they are not. If I felt the need to call someone out on their views of homosexuals, I would have done so plainly. I would not have needed to be sophisticated. I would have called Everett a homophobe. I did not even consider that possibility when I made that statement.

    In the contexts in which I have heard “effete” used it called into question whether an individual was more or less of a man. Everett himself admitted that he did not specify in regards to what, and once he did, I no longer found his usage to be objectionable. Certainly there are those who believe homosexuality makes one of less of a man, and I think those people are idiots, but I did not believe that was what Everett meant at all.

    Our points of agreement are indeed accurate, and I believe we both agree with Everett on the view that casting choices here left much to be desired.

  29. @ Dutch Uncle When did we suddenly become part of the masses? I am being pedantic and I doubt if either word is used much today outside the world of of academia, book societies and people who love a good argument about such things – like here.

    To be fair to Leonardo diCaprio, he has come of age in recent films, I do not see him as Jay Gatsby and Baz Luhrman directing it fills me with dread after the insipid “Australia” and the over hyped “Moulin Rouge”. One thing we can all agree on are the clothes. They just don’t “feel” right although one might expect the Satorialist to pop up and take a photo. I agree about boater with a three piece and stealing Old Bostonian’s line about the outrageously poor fitting of the vest.

    And pray tell What is wrong with the Great Gatsby meeting Steampunk? :0)

  30. F, Scott didn’t dress like this in 1925. Someone needs to call Ralph at the ranch, they need him in Hollywood fast.

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