Sharon Stone Kept Her ‘Basic Instinct’ Dress: “I wasn’t Getting Paid Much”

"I made $500,000; Michael made $14 million. So keeping my costumes was a really smart thing to do.”

Iconic actress Sharon Stone revealed in a new InStyle essay that she was the one who chose the iconic little white dress for her famous leg-crossing scene in 1992’s “Basic Instinct.”

“The costume designer, Ellen Mirojnick, took me to Rodeo Drive and said, ‘You can pick out any one thing that you want for your character,’” she wrote.

So Stone selected a Hermés cream-colored cashmere, which she wore in one of the earliest scenes.

Referring to the well-known interrogation sequence, Sharon revealed that director Paul Verhoeven wasn’t helpful during the research of the proper outfit.

“He jokingly said, ‘I don’t care if you wear a turtleneck and your hair in a bun.’ So I said, ‘Good, because that’s what I was thinking,’” the star recalled.

“We decided to go for all white because my character had a very Hitchcockian vibe. But Ellen designed the dress so that I could sit like a man if he was being interrogated,” Stone continued. “It gave me the ability to move my arms and legs, take up space, and exercise control over a room full of men.”

Though Stone and Mirojnick designed the dress together, the actress didn’t think the outfit would make waves.

“The movie was a thriller and we were stopping the action to watch me sit still in a chair, so I thought the possibility of anybody giving two s—ts about it was zero.”

Stone has talked at length about going commando for the scene, even sharing how she was asked to remove her underwear for the shot. (“My memory is radically different from Sharon’s memory,” the director responded at the time. “Her version is impossible.”)

Anyway, Stone took her revenge:

“I put in my contract that I could keep the clothes,” she said. “People thought I was crazy, but the truth is I wasn’t getting paid much compared to my male co-star. I made $500,000; Michael made $14 million. So keeping my costumes was a really smart thing to do.”


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