Dior strikes gold as Paris fashion makes mixed virtual debut

Dior presented its Fall 20/21 couture collection by way of a short film. Instagram
Short Url
Updated 07 July 2020

Dior strikes gold as Paris fashion makes mixed virtual debut

PARIS: The first ever digital Paris fashion week started Monday to mixed reviews from fashionistas.

Forced online by the coronavirus, labels tried to replicate the glitz and glamour of the real thing by recruiting film and television stars for the films which replaced runway shows.

In a bold move, Dior raised eyebrows by drafting in the Italian director Matteo Garrone, best known for gritty gangster films “Gomorrah” and “Dogman,” to immortalize its haute couture collection.

The gamble seems to have paid off in spades.

His mythologically inspired video featuring Greek nymphs, a mermaid and a rather horny Pan clocked up more than 1.5 million views on Instagram in four hours.

Gorrone weaved the story of the Theatre of Fashion, a touring exhibition of dolls dressed by French designers including Christian Dior just after World War II, into the fantastical universe of his own 2015 film, “Tale of Tales,” starring Salma Hayek and Vincent Cassel.

In the Dior video, two bell boys wheel a trunk modeled on the fashion house’s Paris headquarters through a dreamy primeval forest and offer the nymhs and forest goddesses each a heart-stopping look to try.

The director said Dior’s Italian creator Maria Grazia Chiuri gave him the idea for the storyline.

“When I saw the trunk with the small dresses it was already a fairytale,” he added.

But not everyone was so enchanted.

Some of the most liked comments on the video pointed out that there was “not even one black person in it,” while the New York Times’ Elizabeth Paton tweeted wryly, “Not very diverse casting (with the exception of the man-goats).”

Supermodel Naomi Campbell had earlier opened fashion week by saying it was time the industry took on the lessons of the Black Lives Matter movement and started “enforcing inclusion.”

Like Dior, the Dutch designer Iris van Herpen called in cinematic reinforcements for her video.

Her compatriot, actress Carice van Houten – the Red Priestess from “Game of Thrones” – was the star of Van Herpen’s digital offering, which concentrated on a single one of her ethereal high-tech looks.

View this post on Instagram

Exquisite Carice Van Houten embodying ‘Transmotion’ ~ Carice van Houten and Iris van Herpen were interviewed together by Vanessa Friedman for @NYTimes about their ‘Transmotion’ collaboration. A breath can fan the winds of change, spurring the dispersal of seeds. The film ‘Transmotion’ sheds light on following the process of a germinating first seed, that through nurture, may break ground and bloom into a better world. To read the full article and see the ‘Transmotion’ film ~ link in bio Featuring: Carice van Houten @LeaveCariceAlone Director: Ryan McDaniels @Mr.McDaniels Photography: @Valentine.Bouquet Art direction: @EugeneYeap I Ryan McDaniels Production: Ryan McDaniels I @TobiasHeinrichs1 I @Valentine.Bouquet Casting: @TobiasHeinrichs1 Talent: @Rebekkabeate Hair & make-up: @EmmyKlomp I @EEagency Hair & make-up assistant: @IrisZuidema #irisvanherpen #couture #parisfashionweek #thenewyorktimes #transmotion #caricevanhouten

A post shared by Iris van Herpen Official (@irisvanherpen) on

Van Herpen said she found the leap to digital difficult, “very unsure and quite hectic.”

She said she missed the “collaborative aspect of previous shows” and the adrenaline of showing live.

‘Gladiator’ star Russell Crowe pitches in to rescue blast-hit Beirut eatery Le Chef

Updated 13 August 2020

‘Gladiator’ star Russell Crowe pitches in to rescue blast-hit Beirut eatery Le Chef

  • Oscar-winning Crowe said on Twitter that he made the donation “on behalf of Anthony Bourdain”

BEIRUT: Hollywood star Russell Crowe said Thursday that he donated funds to help rebuild a blast-hit Beirut restaurant on behalf of late food icon Anthony Bourdain, who loved its traditional dishes.
The decades-old Le Chef restaurant, located in the heart of a trendy Beirut district, is a beloved neighborhood place renowned for its home-style cooking.
It was blown to pieces by the August 4 explosion that killed 171 people, wounded at least 6,500 and ravaged swathes of Beirut.
The Oscar-winning Crowe, best known for his role in the 2000 action film Gladiator, said on Twitter that he made the donation “on behalf of Anthony Bourdain.”

“I thought that he would have probably done so if he was still around,” Crowe said of the celebrity chef and travel journalist who committed suicide in 2018.
“Hope things can be put back together soon.”
Crowe’s $5,000 donation was made on a GoFundMe page set up by fans of Le Chef, a restaurant popular with tourists as well as locals in the Gemmayzeh neighborhood that was among the hardest-hit by the explosion.
The online fundraiser raised nearly $11,000 in less than 24 hours, just $2,000 short of its target.


READ MORE: Canadian singer The Weeknd donates $300,000 to victims of Beirut blast


Le Chef is where Bourdain had his first meal when he and his crew where trapped in Lebanon for a week in 2006 because of a month-long war with Israel.
It is featured in the highly-praised Lebanon episode of his ‘No Reservations’ series.
“Really good food, very traditional,” Bourdain says of the restaurant in the show, calling it a “nice mix” of old and new.
It’s a “good first meal in Beirut.”