WCW: Kate Beckinsale


Talk about diverse! Kate Bekinsale has done Shakespeare, Jane Austen, and Merchant-Ivory historical costume movies, as well as a ton of fantasy flicks and modern dramas. But we’re not going to talk about the later ones here because that’s not our jam. We love what Kate’s done in fine frocks as a fiery historical heroine!


Hero in Much Ado About Nothing (1993)

Kate Beckinsale in Much Ado About Nothing (1993)

Looking all golden and free with Emma Thompson.


Flora Poste in Cold Comfort Farm (1995)

Kate Beckinsale in Cold Comfort Farm (1995)

Might be the only sane Starkadder relation?


Emma Woodhouse in Emma (1996)

Kate Beckinsale in Emma (1996)

Aka, the *good* Emma adaption of the ’90s.


Maggie Verver in The Golden Bowl (2000)

Kate Beckinsale in The Golden Bowl (2001)

Ugh, a super-depressing & stiff flick, but gorgeous eye-candy.


Nurse Lt. Evelyn Johnson in Pearl Harbor (2001)

Kate Beckinsale in Pearl Harbor (2001)

Not much historical accuracy in this big-budget, blow’ em up flick, but it’s a cute promo poster!


Ava Gardner in The Aviator (2004)

Kate Beckinsale in The Aviator (2004)

Dayum! That hat! That suit! She had a wardrobe to die for in this movie.


Eliza Graves in Stonehurst Asylum (2014)

Kate Beckinsale in Stonehurst Asylum (2014)

Haven’t seen it, but I think she plays a non-crazy person.


Lady Susan Vernon in Love & Friendship (2016)

Kate Beckinsale in Love & Friendship (2016)

More Austen! Full review coming very soon!



What’s your favorite historical costume movie or TV role of Kate Beckinsale’s?

11 Responses

  1. SusanH

    I first saw her in Much Ado, which I loved. She was fine in it, but her character didn’t give her much to work with. It would be impossible for anyone to be noticed with Emma Thompson as Beatrice. I really disliked her version of Emma (both her interpretation and the script in general), but her version of Flora Poste more than makes up for it. I love everything about Cold Comfort from the brilliant cast to the sets and costumes.

  2. Become an Actor

    Hi Trystan,

    Kate Beckinsale is a great example for frocks in flicks. No matter what role she has, she adapts to the outfit and sells the character.

    Great post,

  3. Susan Pola

    My favourites are Golden Bowl and the WWII One Against the Wind in which she plays the daughter of the Resistance leader and decorated Countess de Merriville who was played by the amazeballs Judy Davis.

  4. SarahV

    I almost think you should do a write-up of The Last Days of Disco, which is a testimony to the stuffy, starchy prissy workplace fashions of the early 80’s while also celebrating the strapless, braless, besequined get-ups of the clubgoing gals on the go. Worn by the same characters, no less.

    Hell, the early 1980s are :this: close to verring into a historical era, anyway, right?

  5. Charity

    I went into Stonehurst Asylum thinking it was going to suck, but I actually… loved it enough to buy it. It’s an unusual film, but haunting, gorgeous costumes too.

    (Not a period piece — but for me, Kate is always Selene from Underworld.)

  6. ladylavinia1932

    Aka, the *good* Emma adaption of the ’90s.

    I’m sorry, but I happen to like the Gwyneth Paltrow very much. Perhaps a little more than the version that starred Ms. Beckinsale.

    However, she has done a great number of roles that are big favorites of mine – including Lady Susan Vernon, Flora Poste, Evelyn Johnson, Ava Gardner and . . . well, a lot.

  7. Stephani

    I loved her in Love & Friendship! She was a perfect Lady Susan; elegant, manipulative, clever, convincing–a wonderfully sympathetic portrayal, I thought.
    Much Ado is the film I ‘blame’ for my entry into the historical costuming world–it inspired many a RenFaire outfit! Beckinsale was a great Hero. And Flora Poste is my home-girl!

  8. Karen K.

    I haven’t seen Love & Friendship yet but Kate Beckinsale is great in everything I’ve seen her in. Love that version of Emma and also Much Ado About Nothing and Cold Comfort Farm. I might have to watch The Aviator just for the costumes!

  9. mmcquown

    She’s also a bit mad, and a bit evil. Travels on the road with a horse costume, and does terrible things to the men who fall asleep on her. Catch her interview on the Graham Norton Show sometime. Saw her first in “Haunted,” which was really creepy, but my heart belongs to Selene — and another one coming out.