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Re-Imagining Laurence Fishburne in The Matrix

In this sixth edition of Re-Imagining: Movie Icons, The Africa Channel and Vanichi Magazine re-imagined Laurence Fishburne as Morpheus in an African Matrix come back.

The Laurence Fishburne Look

The Matrix is counted as one of the memorable 90’s movies in existence. The post-production technical feats like the bullet time effect, cyberpunk sci-fi effects, choreography, and superb directing are just a few characteristics that made this HUGE movie a box office success.

But most important of all, the Matrix is memorable for its iconic fashion. Dark oval shades, skin-tight leather shirts, leather trench coats, business suits, black shiny vinyl costs, combat boots, bondage pants, and post-apocalyptic style clothing all made The Matrix fashion a fusion of dystopian, futuristic and even retro styles.

In a world dominated by artificial intelligence, Neo, Trinity, and Morpheus are humans only hope. This trio form a resistance and still manage to make iconic fashion statements while at it. Most iconic of the trio is Morpheus; leader, and captain of the Nebuchadnezzar.

As a leader, Morpheus’s style exudes mystery, power and authority. Unlike the dark oval glasses worn by Trinity and Neo, Morpheus wore shrunken round and rimless glasses. These glasses are known today as Morpheus Sunglasses.

Morpheus is also popular for his famous trench coat made out of crocodile skin, and of course his love for earthy colors and hues. The Morpheus look is mysterious, powerful, and futuristic all at the same time.

Interestingly, fashion lovers are noticing a comeback of The Matrix fashion. This comeback is traced to the fall 2017 fashion shows when Demna Gvasalia paraded voluminous trench coats paired with small sunglasses.

This 2018, celebrities like Kim Kardashian, Kylie Jenner, Bella and Gigi Hadid have worn Matrix fashion staple to make iconic fashion statements. Kanye West recently added shrunken sun glasses, combat boots and distressed post apocalyptic clothes to his Yeezy collection.

Fashion editors attributed this comeback to our increasing attachment to social media and like the humans in The Matrix, our experience with simulated reality.

The Model

Jordan Anthony Swain has always been obsessed with The Matrix. In his words, “as a millennial I grew up watching The Matrix. Morpheus is a fearless leader and visionary. I’m always a blend of retro meets futurism, and I like to create a seamless line between the two. Morpheus is already swagged out so African Morpheus needs to be super swagged out.”

what if movie icons wore african morpheus matrix

Re-Imagining Laurence Fishburne

To create an Afro-futuristic look, Jonathan decided to wear his floor length trench coat. He wore this with a lemon green shirt designed by Kenneth Nicholson, finely cut pant trousers from M Andrews and Ankara waistcoat designed by Obioma.

This was paired with futuristic custom eyewear styled by Burkinabae. Creative director of Burkinabae, Emilienne Chatelaine is focused on creating statement and avant-garde eyepieces using luxury embellishments, diverse frame shapes, and lens treatments.

To finish the look, Jonathan wore a horn pendant designed by Egyptian jeweler, Ammanii. For the photo-shoot, Jonathan did handstands, back flips, impressive postures and stunts. He still managed to pull this off with style.

All 10 episodes, plus a bonus overview, are currently available on The Africa and Demand Africa.