Magazine article Variety

Fashion House Helps Femme Filmmakers Tell Their Tales

Magazine article Variety

Fashion House Helps Femme Filmmakers Tell Their Tales

Article excerpt

Fashion and film have long intersected when it comes to glitz and glamour. But the Miu Miu Women's Tales series of shorts, which is an integral component of the Venice Days section at the Venice Film Festival, gives the Prada Group-owned fashion label a different role in the movie world: it discovers and empowers women directors.

Launched in 2012, Women's Tales has now spawned 14 works written and directed by women exploring the feminine universe, all fully financed and produced by Prada. They are all loosely inspired by Miu Miu clothes and accessories, but with no obligation for these products to be shown on the screen.

It started like this: "One day I got a call from Miu Miu," says producer Max Brun. "They said: 'We'd like to do a short by a woman director because we want to explore women's creativity through young female directors' lenses.. .which embodies the brand's attention to women's themes."

Brun came up with four proposals of directors he thought could be interesting: Zoe Cassavetes from the U.S., Lucrecia Martel from Argentina, Giada Colagrande from Italy, and U.S.-based Iranian director Massy Tadjedin.

"When I presented the proposals, they liked all four, so they said, 'Let's do all four,' " he says.

Venice Days artistic director Giorgio Gosetti caught wind of the initiative from a collaborator who is friends with Colagrande and thought it would be "great to create a space for female creativity and freedom within Venice Days," he says.

He discussed it with Prada CEO Miuccia Prada, who is its head designer and founder of the Miu Miu label, with Prada and Miu Miu's PR director Verde Visconti (a descendant of Italian master director Luchino Visconti), and Brun.

"We agreed that this could be a different kind of [festival] window and also a different type of project," which would also encompass a series of stimulating conversations about women and movies, Gosetti says.

Miuccia Prada, who declined to be interviewed for this report, has long had an artistic approach in her relationship to film. Last year she financed a series of seminars on new frontiers in filmmaking titled Belligerent Eyes, held in the Prada Foundation's Venetian outpost.

The bar of the Prada Foundation in Milan, called Bar Luce, is designed by Wes Anderson. She co-designed the cocktail and evening gowns featured in Baz Luhrmann's "The Great Gatsby."

Prior to Women's Tales, Prada had produced a commercial for a Prada fragrance directed by Ridley Scott titled "Thunder Perfect Mind," which screened at the Berlin Film Festival. Another Prada commercial directed by Roman Polanski, titled "A Therapy," screened at Cannes. And over the years she has cultivated relationships with several other directors, including Pedro Almodovar, who appears in Prada's latest fall/winter menswear campaign, which he did not direct, and Alejandro G. …

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