On Super Bowl Sunday, the career paths of a Delco costume designer and her sports journalist father will converge

Sports journalist and author Rich Westcott and her youngest daughter, a film and television costume designer Amy Westcottdon’t have a favorite team playing Super Bowl LVI.

But Rich and his wife, Lois, will watch the game at their Delaware County home, while their daughter and her family will watch in Brooklyn — mostly to see the debut of a Chevy truck commercial with a cast dressed by Amy.

Spoiler alert: It’s not that viral Chevy Silverado truck ad starring Walter the Terror Factor Cat.

“I love this ad! said Amy, who for the past 25 years has designed costumes for films such as Black Swan and TV shows likeand The Many Saints of Newark. She has also dressed artists in commercials for Taco Bell and Dr Pepper.

She can’t say much about her Chevy ad for the big game — the concept, the cast, and even the costumes are quiet until airtime.

Her father, meanwhile, was happy to offer details about Amy’s early career.

“I remember when she was 6 and she was making doll clothes and I was like, ‘What is she doing? said Rich, sitting with his daughter in the living room of the family’s Springfield Township home. He and Lois are also parents to son Chris and daughters Susan and Laura.

“Lois and I are very proud of them all,” he said. “We have a great group.”

With a vestigial but still indelible Delco accent (the real one, not the Eastown Mare version), Amy said her father understood her dedication to doll sewing.

When I was 12, “I asked him what I could do when I grew up, and he said I could do something” with clothes and fashion, she said.

“It was mind-blowing to me, that he believed I could do this. Later when I started working in films, he realized it was a huge risk and hand-to-mouth for many years because he was a freelancer and used to that lifestyle,” she said. “It’s funny. He was always very involved in the sport, but he had to find his place in writing on sports. I was very into fashion, I got a degree in fashion, but I had to find my way into a career where I could really use that skill.

The fact that father and daughter managed to succeed in the careers they love is a testament to talent, luck, courage and hard work.

Rich grew up playing baseball in Roxborough and was a promising pitcher at Drexel University when he was sidelined for good with a shoulder injury. A fraternity brother who edited the student newspaper, the Drexel triangle, suggested Rich write about the sport he loved but could no longer play.

“I told him I had no idea how to cover a game, and he said, ‘You know the coach, you know most of the players, you know how the game works, and we’ll help you'” , said Rich, then majoring in marketing.

“The first time I took a journalism class was years later, when I taught one at Temple.”

By the 1960s, newspapers were booming, the Westcott family was growing, and Rich got a job as the sports editor of the Germantown Mail and the Main line timetables, weekly newspapers owned by the same company. “I get paid $50 a week,” he said, “plus $5 a week for expenses.”

Later, he became a full-time sports journalist in what is now the Delaware County Daily Times and would continue to work full-time in trade publications and a freelancer for other publications such as The Inquirer. A recent column he wrote for the Daily Times expressed outrage about Dick Allen, the pioneering Black Phillies player, once again snubbed by the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Rich’s first book, The Phillies Encyclopedia, was released in 1984. Since then, there have been 26 more, most centered around the Phillies and baseball. In the 1980s, Rich also founded the bi-weekly Phillies Report, publishing, editing, writing and selling advertisements for it from his home office/baseball journalism sanctuary until he sold the publication for 14 years. later.

Rich is still there: his latest book, Incredible Phillies feats, was released last year. He is also active with the Delaware County Athletes Hall of Fame and with other defenders of a long-proposed Philadelphia Sports Museum.

“I don’t want to stop. If I quit, the next day they will plant me in the ground,” he said. “And I don’t want to sit in a rocking chair watching TV all day.”

That’s not Amy’s style either.

“He inspired a very strong work ethic with us when we were kids,” she said. “When we were growing up, the first day of summer was always, ‘So what do you do for a job?’ Mom and dad knew you had to quit. They taught us how to scrap. And they were always very supportive.”

After graduating from Syracuse University and struggling to break into fashion as a designer in New York – she described Seventh Avenue as “a horrible cut” – Amy was lucky enough to work as a production assistant of costumes on a film shoot in 1996. the film was cop lands: He had a heavyweight cast, including Sylvester Stallone and Robert DeNiro, got good reviewsand launched Amy’s career in costume design.

She then gained a solid reputation for her work on The squid and the whale and other independent films, which helped her land a long costume design gig for the TV series Surroundings. It was about four young guys trying to make it in hollywooda task that Amy herself has accomplished with Black Swan as well as his work on films like The wrestler and Somnambulist.

“The wrestler is probably my favorite project,” she said. “We created all of this world.”

This 2008 film was shot in Philadelphia, which gave Rich and Lois the opportunity to visit the set. “We ended up as extras in one of the shots,” Rich said. “We went out to dinner that night – which was Amy’s lunch break time!”

Amy, who has two children with her husband, Marc Mylodproducer and director of Successioncredits his mother with teaching him to sew.

“I’m very happy with all my kids,” said Lois, a retired teacher who taught home economics in schools in Philly, Norristown and Fort Washington for 32 years. “We had fabric around and we were doing fun things with it. Amy had lots of great ideas. She and I made a dress, maybe it was for prom, and with Amy, it always had to not only not stand out, but be fun and special and different. It was a strapless red dress. A conceptual thing.

Lois, who also taught Amy how to cook, said her daughter had set herself up for success. “Most kids, you buy them activity books. She made her own activity books,” Lois said.

For Amy, creative costume design work always begins with the script.

“It starts with the words,” she says. “I read the script and I re-read it. I want to understand how I can contribute and help actors paint their characters with the paint that suits them.

When it comes to the long hours and endless details involved in creating a movie, TV show, or Super Bowl commercial, his father’s writing career has been a model, she said.

“He was working all the time. We could hear the click-click-click of the typewriter,” she said. “You meet new people in his business and mine all the time. Like a constant conversation. This has been a theme in both of our careers.

Amy said her father also taught her to take advantage of opportunities.

And to own it.

“She did,” Rich said. “The career she has is a perfect fit.”

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