The Famous Artworks That Inspired 15 Films


Thomas Gainsborough’s The Blue Boy and Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained

We thought we recognized that blue satin getup with ruffles and breeches from somewhere. For some audiences, the outfit was Tarantino’s nod to cinematography and the influential filmmaker F.W. Murnau — specifically his film Der Knabe in Blau (The Blue Boy). However, costume designer Sharen Davis discussed the outfit in a Vanity Fair interview, revealing that she actually showed an image of the painting to Tarantino:

Quentin had it in the script as powder blue. And I said, ‘I just can’t do that. It is very 70s, but that’s going to look like polyester no matter what I make it out of.’ I slipped a copy of Thomas Gainsborough’s The Blue Boy in the back of the research book. He didn’t say anything, but he saw it. He sort of said later, ‘Oh! Make him look like Blue Boy.’”