Caeser Flickerman shakes his head at a neon green houndstooth tie in the corner of his closet. The frenetic pattern, he says with a sigh, distracted a victor during an interview. He hasn’t worn it since. That’s not to say that the stylish impresario of the Capitol’s airwaves eschews flashy, flamboyant fashion. “Your style should always make people lean closer, not look away,” he says.
No one knows that better than Flickerman—an arbiter of au courant style—who has lent a public voice and persona to tributes and victors alike for the past 40 years. And over that time, he has honed his sartorial sense to a piercing intensity. Suits are a must because they create a cohesive look. His closet, which features tufted ottomans in bone velvet and three full-length mirrors, is painted a soothing shade of pale lavender to match his current hair color.
“I like to complement my surroundings, so I always feel stylish,” he says. “Don’t you love that?” The hue of his bouffant hair changes annually for every Hunger Games. (He still proudly defends the crimson coif he sported for the 73rd Games, even though district darling Katniss told him that it looked like he was bleeding.) “My stylist touches up the color daily and the process is very drying. I have this wonderful deep conditioner that is custom-blended for me,” he says. With a wink, he adds: “I’m very high maintenance.”
The custom, monogrammed hangers in his closet boast at least 100 suits that are categorized by color. Black and white dominate, but many of the ensembles are hand dusted with glitter or a sheen that makes Flickerman shine on camera. (He has a secret source in the Capitol who coats the fabrics of his suits, but won’t reveal her name.) As for designers, he likes Dries Van Noten for their dark floral fabrics, Comme des Garcons for its architectural forms and Tom Ford for his obsessive-compulsive attention to every stitch and pinstripe—of course, every piece is bespoke and designers present sketches for Flickerman to approve before they create his custom pieces.
Though he is decidedly subjective about fashion, Flickerman often comes across as abjectly neutral on the subject of the tributes. This particular Quarter Quell Hunger Games presents a challenge to even the most determinedly neutral of spectators though. “I think this is going to be the most exciting Hunger Games Panem has ever seen,” he says, gesticulating passionately. “It’s a much more level playing field, which really raises the stakes. I am so moved and inspired by the courageousness of each of the tributes.”