By Bronwyn Barnes
Updated December 22, 2012 at 02:00 PM EST
Credit: Universal
  • Movie

Though his past work has mostly been on smaller projects like Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Biutiful and Álex de la Iglesia’s The Last Circus, Spanish costume designer Paco Delgado was called on to create an epic wardrobe for the cast of nearly 4,000 actors in Les Misérables.

Among his most difficult tasks; manually distressing costumes worn by the down-and-out Jean Valjean (Hugh Jackman) and the ill-fated Fantine (Anna Hathaway) to make them look threadbare, clothing scores of extras who filled in the ranks of convicts, prostitutes and revolutionaries, and coming up with historically accurate togs for Gavroche (Daniel Huttlestone) and the other the pint-sized street urchins.

Delgado also injected doses of color — specifically the color red — to the otherwise bleak scene of 19th century Paris. As for characters like Monsieur and Madame Thénardier, played to perfection by Helena Bonham Carter and Sacha Baron Cohen, their costumes are a sort of comic relief. “[We] were trying to bring their personalities, somehow, into the movie,” Delgado says of using garish fabrics to create the couple’s eccentric wardrobe.

Watch the video below for a behind-the-scenes look at the costumes of Les Misérables, which hits theaters on December 25.

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Les Miserables

  • Movie
  • PG-13
  • 167 minutes
  • Tom Hooper