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The Fifth Element Costume That Probably Shouldn't Have Been Greenlit

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From the very start of "The Fifth Element," audience members know that they are in for a science-fiction film that marches to the beat of its own drum. From the design of the spaceships, the aliens, and even the cities themselves, "The Fifth Element" definitely is a unique look at the far future of Earth. "The Fifth Element" starts off in 1914 when the alien race known as the Mondoshawans comes to Egypt in order to collect a powerful weapon against evil. The aliens then promise their return when a vast and powerful cosmic embodiment of evil appears, which happens every 5,000 years.

Flash forward to 2263, and the world is highly developed with massive skyscrapers that stand above clouds. Technology has also advanced to impressive levels, which is highlighted by flying cars, futuristic weaponry, and fashion design choices. However, Earth is also overpopulated, and the main character of Korben Dallas (Bruce Willis) lives in an apartment that is just a single, narrow room, and in a later scene trash is scene piled up in the corners of a spaceport because there is simply no room. Of course, when one is discussing an advanced landscape cast far into the future, the topic of dress and fashion is sure to come up, and there is definitely more than one questionable decision in this area. One, in particular, stands out from the rest.

The costume in question was designed by the director of The Fifth Element and a famous fashion designer

The future of "The Fifth Element" is recognizable enough, though some of the costumes contained within the movie are definitely eyebrow-raising, to say the least. With plenty of colors, straps, and absolutely bonkers hairstyles, the fashion of the future definitely helps to highlight the passage of time. Just look at how the antagonist of "The Fifth Element," Jean-Baptiste Emmanuel Zorg (Gary Oldman) appears in his very first scene — an almost iridescent flared suit-dress, covered neck, and plastic half-dome upon his head. Likewise, even Korben Dallas' costume features bright plastic suspenders, and the cheetah-print outfit Ruby Rhod (Chris Tucker) is anything but subtle. However, perhaps the most iconic costume of "The Fifth Element," and one that probably shouldn't have been greenlit, is the famous bandage outfit worn by Leeloo (Milla Jovovich).

Speaking with Vogue, Jovovich explained how the famous costume came to be, and it was created by director Luc Besson and world-class fashion designer Jean Paul Gaultier. She elaborated, "Being in a hospital, they put a robe on you that is open in the back so they can reach in and put injections and tubes. So you have to have as little as possible, but for the sake of modesty, you have to cover up ... When people get wounded, like, they just put bandages to cover the necessary bits. And Luc and Jean Paul talked about this bandage idea, and Jean Paul was like, 'Genius! I love it.'"

The bandage costume made Jovovich uncomfortable

Leeloo's bandage outfit is given to the character after her revival from a couple of surviving biological cells. This resurrection is jarring to Leeloo, and she reacts by escaping, which sends her careening into the life of Korben Dallas and setting her on the path to fully utilize her powers as the actual fifth element.

Although it was explained earlier that this costume had its basis in medical bandages and garments, the bandage suit has entered the pop culture zeitgeist, with the costume available for purchase on Amazon. However, it seems as if the suit caused some issues for Milla Jovovich during filming. In a 2012 interview with Entertainment Weekly (via Yahoo), Jovovich said that she had grown up as a model and was used to being the center of attention, though the bandage outfit in "The Fifth Element" definitely made her feel embarrassed.

"In the fashion world, most of the guys are gay and they have the etiquette not to notice," Jovovich explained. "But these English guys working on the set were whistling and stuff." Despite being one of the most famous parts of "The Fifth Element," it seems as if the bandage outfit proved to even be a bit too much for Jovovich, or at least for those working on set. This makes sense, considering that the costume should have been a bit more practical — and a little less revealing. Most people these days don't look at a hospital gown and think of sex appeal, though that certainly is one of the outcomes of Leeloo's bandage outfit in "The Fifth Element."