You may not know Rose McIver’s name yet, but by the end of the year you most certainly will. The 21-year-old actress is set to make her big screen debut when Peter Jackson’s film adaptation of The Lovely Bones premieres in London on November 24.
McIver plays Lindsey Salmon, the younger sister of Susie, a murdered teenager who watches over her family from heaven as they come to terms with her death.
Based on the best-selling book released in 2002, the film also stars Susan Sarandon, Mark Wahlberg and Rachel Weisz and is set to be released in New Zealand next month.
Most of us will struggle to decide on an outfit for the office Christmas party, so what do you choose to wear to the royal gala premiere of one of the most eagerly anticipated films of the year – with the Queen in attendance? Can you say pressure?
But for McIver, who at the age of five played a role in The Piano and has also appeared in commercials and TV shows, choosing a gown for one of the most special nights of her life was surprisingly easy.
“My only criterion was that it had to be something appropriate for a very formal occasion that I could walk in easily,” she explains. The answer was a beautiful floor-length Juliette Hogan pleated gown, made especially for McIver by the designer.
“Given that it’s a premiere, red-carpeted event with the Queen in tow, we thought something long would be perfect,” explains Hogan, who says she knew her design sense would fit with McIver’s sweet personality straight away.
“We ended up mixing up a top from a previous design with the skirt from the long pleated dress from this past Fashion Week. I really think she will look stunning – and the pleats kicking around her legs as she walks along the carpet will look divine. I think it’s really important for the person wearing the dress to feel completely comfortable and happy. It’s a pretty big event for her, so she needs to feel really at home in what she’s wearing.”
It was Hogan’s feminine and wearable aesthetic – plus several recommendations from friends – that appealed to McIver. “The aspect of her designs that most appeals to me is her palette, I love the understated colours. I also really like her demure, feminine aesthetic and the functionality of the pieces.”
Of course McIver could have had her pick of plenty of fancy international labels, something which Hogan says is particularly exciting.
“It’s really flattering to have someone choose you to design a dress for them for such an important event – especially when I’m sure she could have chosen from anyone.”
For McIver, the choice to go local was a no-brainer.
“I’m always eager to promote New Zealand talent. When there is a wealth of design and craftsmanship in New Zealand, why look afield?”