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James Acheson (born 13.3.1946) is a British costume designer.

James Acheson
Born1946 (age 72–73)
Leicester, England
Occupationcostume designer
Years active1973–present

Born in Leicester, England, James Acheson was educated at Colchester Royal Grammar School and studied at Wimbledon School of Art.

He has designed costumes and sets for television, theatre, opera, ballet and film. He has worked in more than 14 different countries.

For BBC Television he designed the costumes and monsters for 36 episodes of “Doctor Who” including establishing the costume for the 4th incarnation of the Doctor, played by Tom Baker.

He is a 3 time Academy Award ( Oscar) winner for Costume Design for his work on the films,”The Last Emperor” directed by Bernardo Bertolucci, “Dangerous Liaisons” directed by Stephen Frears and “Restoration” directed by Michael Hoffman.

His other film work includes, “Time Bandits” and “Brazil” both directed by Terry Gilliam, "The Meaning of Life" and "Wind in the Willows" directed by Terry Jones, “Highlander” director Russel Mulcahy, "The Sheltering Sky" and "Little Buddha" directed by Bernardo Bertolucci, “The Man in the Iron Mask” directed by Randall Wallace and the first 3 “Spiderman” movies, directed by Sam Raimi.

His theatre work includes, “Hamlet” in London and on Broadway starring Ralph Fiennes and directed by Jonathan Kent and “The Marriage of Figaro” in both Vienna and at The Metropolitan Opera, New York directed by Sir Jonathan Miller.

For the Royal New Zealand Ballet he designed both sets and costumes for a new production of Prokofiev’s, “Romeo and Juliet”

choreographed by Francesco Ventriglia.



  • Susan Langenhennig (2008-05-20). "James Acheson, the Oscar-winning designer of Spider-Man's signature threads, shares his secrets at a costumers convention in New Orleans". The Times-Picayune. Retrieved 2008-05-22.

External linksEdit

James Acheson on IMDb