||The American actor, producer, and director Robert De Niro (born 1943) is one of the
respected actors of his generation. He is best known for his roles as the young Vito
Corleone in The Godfather, Part II (1974), cab driver Travis
Bickle in Taxi Driver (1976), Michael Vronsky in The Deer Hunter (1978), casino director Sam “Ace” Rothstein in
Casino (1995), and more recently as Jack Byrnes in Meet the Parents (2000) and Meet the Fockers (2004). De Niro has produced more than thirty
films, many of which he starred in, and directed two films, A Bronx Tale (1993) and The Good Shepherd (2006).
||The Robert De Niro Costumes and Props, 1967-2005 (bulk 1990-2005), consist of approximately
8,000 costume, prop, and makeup items from fifty-six motion pictures and two theater
productions. Included are items from unidentified productions for which the genre
are unknown. The costumes and props were acquired in 2006 along with De Niro’s personal
papers, moving image materials, and personal effects, which are described separately
housed in Manuscript, Film, and Personal Effects collections within the Ransom Center.
||The materials in this collection provide evidence of decisions made and/or implemented
the costume designer, the wardrobe department, the property master, and the makeup
The collection is arranged by production title and, within each production, by item
reflecting the order in which the material was received and/or cataloged. A list of
represented productions is appended to this description. Item-level descriptions are
available in a searchable database which is accessible by production, actor, and costume
||The collection contains 5,100 costumes, 2,350 props, 350 makeup items such as colored
contact lenses and fake teeth, and 200 production accessories, a category which includes
items used by De Niro in conjunction with a production but not visible on film, such
padding worn in fight scenes. Also included are about thirty personal effects such
De Niro’s personal trailer slippers used on the set of Godsend (2004). Of the roughly 300 different types of objects in the
collection, shirts, pants, jackets, shoes, socks, neckties, and belts are the most
||Coverage varies from one or two items to hundreds of objects per production. Generally,
older productions are represented by fewer items. With 1,000 items, A Bronx Tale (1993) is by far the most thoroughly documented
production. For this film, in addition to more than 200 items worn by De Niro in the
character of Lorenzo, the collection includes items worn or used by two dozen actors
including Chazz Palminteri, Taral Hicks, and Joe Pesci. Other well documented productions
are Goodfellas (1990), Cape Fear (1991), Guilty by Suspicion (1991), Night and the City (1992), Mad Dog and Glory (1993), Casino (1995), Heat (1995), Flawless (1999), Men of Honor (2000), Meet the Parents (2000), The Score (2001), Showtime (2002), Godsend (2004), and Hide and Seek (2005). Of the forty costume designers credited in
this collection, the best represented are Rita Ryack, Aude Bronson-Howard, Richard
John A. Dunn, and Daniel Orlandi.
||Many items were received at the Ransom Center with wardrobe tags attached indicating
name of the actor, the scene number, and/or change number in which the item was used,
whether the item was actually worn or used. Apart from materials representing A Bronx Tale, nearly all items were worn or used by Robert De Niro.
Some items in the collection were used by De Niro’s stunt doubles or photo doubles.
item does not have a wardrobe tag, it is very difficult to determine the exact circumstances
of its use, even with the aid of wardrobe continuity books and Polaroids located in
Robert De Niro Papers.
||Similarly, the sources of items in this collection are poorly documented. Most contemporary
costumes were purchased off-the-rack from mainstream retailers. Some period costumes
fabricated by tailors for specific productions, notably the archbishop’s vestments
The Bridge of San Luis Rey (2004). Domonic Gherardi, Anto, and
Cosprop are the best represented tailors. Vintage items may have been obtained from
suppliers who specialized in providing vintage clothing to the motion picture industry.
Props for stunt doubles tended to be fabricated using De Niro’s prop as a model. The
manufacturer’s label is often the best, and only, indication of the source of an item
is not indicated in the wardrobe continuity book.