‘Nine Perfect Strangers’: Melvin Gregg Made Changes to Ben’s Wardrobe to Reflect the Character’s New Money Status

Plenty of thought was put into the costumes and look of the characters in Hulu’s Nine Perfect Strangers. Samara Weaving went through a total makeover for her role as the image-obsessed Jessica. Nicole Kidman was transformed into the wellness guru Masha, with a flowy white dress and a long blonde wig. Bobby Cannavale chose Tony’s t-shirts and wide-brimmed hat to portray his sad status as a washed-up former professional football player.

Melvin Greg poses for a photo without smiling, wearing a green suit and tie.
Melvin Gregg | Rich Fury/WireImage

Melvin Gregg, who plays Ben in Nine Perfect Strangers, also had some input on his character’s outfits. He suggested that the wardrobe should match Ben’s new money status.

Ben wins the lottery in ‘Nine Perfect Strangers’

Ben and his wife Jessica arrive at Tranquillum House in a yellow Lamborghini, immediately showing their fellow guests that they are wealthy. However, it’s not until the episode “Earth Day” that Ben shares how he became rich. “I won the lottery,” he tells the other male guests. His total winnings were $22 million.

Ben and Jessica Chandler stand side-by-side at Tranquillum House. Ben wears a blue and white sweater and gold chain. Jessica wears a purple tank top.
Melvin Gregg and Samara Weaving in ‘Nine Perfect Strangers’ | Vince Valitutti/Hulu

Ben and Jessica were barely scraping by before. After winning the lottery, they became wealthy in ways they never could have imagined. In an interview with Insider, Gregg shared that this dramatic shift would have informed the way Ben dressed. “It’s new money. New money is different from old money,” Gregg said, adding, “Once you’re Bill Gates, you can walk around in Target clothes, but it’s new money.” He explained that he pictured Ben wearing the flashiest clothes he could to flaunt his newfound wealth.

Melvin Gregg changed Ben’s initial wardrobe

According to Insider, when Gregg arrived on the set of Nine Perfect Strangers, he was surprised by the simple clothing chosen for Ben. “It looked like he shopped at Target,” he told the outlet. Gregg reasoned that after so much time feeling inadequate, his character would have used his money to transform his outward appearance. “When you see him, he seems like someone with success, some notoriety. But then when you get to know him, you realize that it’s all a mask to hide his insecurities,” Gregg told Insider.

Ben Chandler sits on the ground and looks up. He is wearing stud earrings, a maroon tank top, and a silver chain.
Melvin Gregg as Ben in ‘Nine Perfect Strangers’ | Vince Valitutti/Hulu

Ben’s wife, Jessica, is even more obsessed with her image. She is an Instagram influencer who undergoes extreme cosmetic procedures after she and Ben win the lottery. Weaving underwent an intense transformation to play the part of Jessica, even wearing fake teeth and wire pulling to give her a facelift look. Gregg explained to Insider that someone as image-obsessed as Jessica would never let her husband wear cheap, basic clothes. The crew eventually agreed to choose more expensive clothing for Gregg’s role as Ben.

Will ‘Nine Perfect Strangers’ address Ben and Jessica’s relationship issues?

Recently, Ben and Jessica have slid into the background of Nine Perfect Strangers. They appear to have reconnected physically and aren’t fighting anymore. In the most recent episode, the couple even decided to renew their vows. However, the series has yet to fully dive into the issues that led them to Tranquillum House. In the book, Ben and Jessica’s newfound wealth is a massive reason for their marriage troubles. Ben misses the life they had before and the way Jessica looked before plastic surgery.

Still, the series has gone a different direction from the book in many ways. It could be that a little MDMA and relaxation are all the couple need in the series.

RELATED: ‘Nine Perfect Strangers’: Melvin Gregg Wanted to Keep Samara Weaving’s Prop Nose From the Horrifying Hallucination Scene