More memorable than any other item of Indy’s clothes is
his signature rumpled brown fedora. The wearing
of a broad brimmed hat, even a fedora, is nothing
new to adventure films. Since the beginning of
adventure filmmaking, white explorer types have
always worn one of two items, either a pith helmet
or a broad brimmed hat. The pith helmet was usually
more of a military application, such as in Gunga
Din, and the felt hat was more often seen
on non-military adventurers.
We can trace the use of safari hats
in film back to the Tarzan movies of the 1930s
as well as safari adventures of the 1950s, such
Solomon’s Mines and Mogambo.
However, Indiana Jones’ hat, while used
in a safari and adventure capacity is actually
not an outdoors hat in the strictest sense. Rather,
his hat is a dress fedora normally worn in a more
urban setting with dressier clothes. Keep in mind
however that hats of the 1930s, even dressier
hats, were very well made and could take an impressive
amount of abuse. The brown dress fedora as an
adventure hat can been seen in films like China
of the Incas.
longer has the Raiders
but they still offer
Naturally, this was the hat of choice
for Indiana Jones, a character wholly based on
older movie adventurers. Raiders
of the Lost Ark costume designer Deborah
Nadoolman, in our interview,
said that they found the hat at Herbert
Johnson hat shop in London, and that it
was an "Australian" model. With a little
tinkering and trimming, it became the famous Indiana
Jones fedora. According to other sources, Harrison
Ford found the hat at Herbert
Johnson himself and personally tried it
on. Regardless of the correctness of exact details,
the original hat came from the Herbert
Johnson hat shop in London.
The hat in Raiders
is very distinct with a tight front pinch, a wide
brim and a rather tall crown. By the time Temple
of Doom came around, that particular hat
was no longer available and Herbert
Johnson supplied their "Poet"
hat as a substitute. This hat would also be used
in Last Crusade.
The "Poet" has a more tapered and shorter
crown and can still be acquired from Herbert
different fedora's used in
of Doom and
of Doom there are rumors that Stetson,
who manufactured licensed replicas of the hat
as part of the merchandising campaign for the
film, got a few of their lids into the movie.
This has never been confirmed, but the hat does
change significantly from scene to scene.