We lay our scene in fair Opening Ceremony, where Leonardo DiCaprio‘s iconic Hawaiian shirt from the Baz Luhrmann film Romeo + Juliet is now on display in honor of the cult-favorite film’s 20th anniversary.
In the film, Romeo [DiCaprio] hails from Verona Beach, California instead of Shakespeare’s original Verona, Italy, so his surfer style is only fitting. In a modern update of the Shakespearean classic, the Montagues and the Capulets are mafia gangs, rather than prominent families, and Juliet is played by a young Claire Danes. There are guns instead of swords and the star-crossed-lovers are doomed to the same violent ends.
“This movie changed my life,” said Opening Ceremony co-founder Humberto Leon in a statement. “I want to dress like everyone in this film. I was in the middle of my schooling at UC Berkeley when this film came out and saw a student screening on campus. 20 years later, we have Leo’s shirt and other awesome mood boards to share with people to celebrate its anniversary.” Luhrmann himself made an appearance at the display’s unveiling, along with Nellee Hooper, who arranged the score and soundtrack for Romeo + Juliet.
Leon isn’t alone in his nostalgia for young Leo’s look. In the past 20 years, Hawaiian shirts have gone from a trend most typically associated with tourists and retired geezers of Boca Raton to a favorite of fashion designers and street style stars around the world.
Former Saint Laurent designer Hedi Slimane deserves credit for the rebirth of the Hawaiian shirt. After moving to Los Angeles, he fell in love with the city’s palm trees and laid-back California look. For his Spring 2016 show, he created high-fashion Hawaiian-inspired shirts. Other brands like Gucci, Valentino, Off-White, and Our Legacy quickly followed suit. Now, there are countless high-fashion adaptations of the classic print hanging on racks — even in the wintertime. In fact, “pool punk” Hawaiian shirts from the Australian brand Double Rainbouu are currently on sale at Opening Ceremony. Plus, social media-less trendsetter Justin Bieber is a fan.
But the original Hawaiian shirt will only be on display at Opening Ceremony’s Howard street location until November 21st, so hurry in now to see Romeo’s rags in the flesh. If you look closely, you might even be able to spot his tears.