Daniel Kaluuya and Jide Osifeso explain why they wanted to create “No” products
At Jordan Peele Nope, there is an unspoken clothing confrontation between two cowboys. On one side is the archetypal cowboy: Steven Yeun’s Ricky “Skirt” Park, a child actor who plays his big role at a secluded Western theme park called Jupiter’s Claim, where he leads the dance in a costume Nudie embroidered in purple and a wide-brimmed hat. On the other, the contemporary cowboy: Daniel Kaluuya’s Otis Haywood Jr. or OJ, a third-generation animal trainer who grew up on his family’s ranch, wearing, as many 21st-century ranchers do , hoodies and jeans. OJ’s workwear makes it easier to switch between the ranch and the real world because seen from a slightly different angle, it’s also streetwear.
During production, Kaluuya sat down with his friend, designer Jide Osifeso to create streetwear-adjacent products to commemorate the film.
“I went to Jordan and [Peele’s production company] Monkeypaw with the idea of reaching more people in the culture outside of the film world with a capsule collection, the goal being to start a relationship with the young world of fashion that dictates so much in the culture,” said said the actor QG by email. “The capsule collection with Jide Osifeso is the bridge, a way of translating the film into a new medium, perhaps reaching people we haven’t reached before. Jide’s clothes are always at the intersection of timeless and current, which seems very relevant to Nope.”
Their connection has become easy. As Osifeso said recently by phone from Los Angeles, “Our conversations are about our perspectives on life, our perspectives on the challenges of working in this space and coming from our backgrounds,” he said. declared. “We are both children of African immigrants – he obviously grew up in the UK and I grew up in California, but it’s very, very similar.” Together they designed a capsule of very graphic t-shirts and hoodies, including a riff on the safety orange sweatshirt from the 2001 movie The Scorpion King which OJ wears throughout the film, as a nod to merchheads around the world – which the duo see as an extension of Peele’s metafictional matrix.
Kaluuya and Osifeso shared ideas via 10-second voice notes, ruminating on what specific footage from the film they might want to incorporate. (An early design was inspired by the fictional fish sandwich Copperpot Cove which appears in all of Peele’s films, and where OJ and company eat early in Nope.) Osifeso got stuck on “this first morbid video of the black man on horseback” which opens the film and what it conveys about blackness, equestrian culture, Hollywood and America in general.
Even in the wake of Lil Nas X’s colossal “Old Town Road” and a broader pursuit of “yee haw agenda“Black cowboy culture remains both overlooked and misunderstood, putting it squarely in the sweet spot of Peele’s cultural commentary.” people to sort of audit their preconceptions or their preconceptions about people or things,” Osifeso said, and “black cowboy culture has been around since we’ve been here since day one in America.”