Between the Venice and Toronto Film Festivals and New York Fashion Week, September has become the hot month for fashiony films. 'Kingsman: The Golden Circle' and Andre Leon Talley's doc about his storied career are among the trendy releases.
Helmed by fashion illustrator and former New Yorker fashion director Michael Roberts, this portrait of shoe innovator Manolo Blahnik tells the story of how he went from making shoes out of candy wrappers for lizards in his family's garden to designing luxurious red carpet-ready footwear for Hollywood's A-list.
The doc features interviews with Anna Wintour, who's known to wear Manolos almost exclusively, John Galliano, Rihanna, Iman, Naomi Campbell, Rupert Everett, Isaac Mizrahi, André Leon Talley and more.
"He may not recognize this, but he has become a legend," Wintour says in the film. "He almost sees it as his duty to make women look beautiful and feel great about their shoes. It's very touching."
Opens Sept. 15 in L.A. and New York City.
Director Kate Novack chronicles the life and career of Andre Leon Talley, from Andy Warhol's Factory to editor-at-large at Vogue, with commentary from Marc Jacobs, Tom Ford and Valentino.
"People say to me, 'Aren't you that fashion guy?' But they don't really know what it is that I ever did," Talley tells The Hollywood Reporter. "Kate really established what I did and that it wasn't just sitting in the front row of fashion shows. I had an impact in the fashion world."
Talley adds: "It's a very sensitive film and it shows where I came from, which is very important. How I got from humble North Carolina to New York City, to Studio 54. And also how important the inspirations of literature and beauty were in my youth through my life at church and my life with my grandmother. I find it very poetic."
In addition to being inspired by his grandmother, Bennie Davis, Talley also talks about the influence of the late fashion editor and style icon Diana Vreeland.
"My grandmother and Mrs. Vreeland were so different in their lives but so similar," Talley recounts. "They both believed in the strong values of work, family and tradition, and I learned very early on from my grandmother. I had chores and duties to do. And I did them with great glee because they were a part of my life."
Premieres Sept. 8 at Toronto Film Festival.
This trippy Humboldt, California-set drama, the directorial debut of Rodarte designer sisters Kate and Laura Mulleavy, stars their friend and muse Kirsten Dunst as Theresa, a woman living among the trees with a dying relative, and touches on themes as varied as assisted suicide, legalized marijuana and the vanishing redwoods.
"We knew we had to tell the story of these trees we grew up around, and what they made you feel like," Laura Mulleavy tells The Hollywood Reporter of their rural upbringing in Northern California, where the film was shot in a style that will be recognizable to anyone who has looked at the designers' runway collections, which are often driven by a narrative. "We also felt strongly we wanted to tell a story that was stream-of-consciousness driven, from a specific female’s perspective, combining destruction and beauty."
"You are in Theresa’s world in this film," adds Kate Mulleavy. "We played with time and space, her emotional experience of the landscape around her, and the idea that we retreat more and more into our own world."
Premiered Sept. 3 at the Venice Film Festival; opens Sept. 22.
The dapper crime fighters head to the U.S., opening up a world of new wardrobe opportunities that costume designer Arianne Phillips has channeled into a high-fashion collection for global menswear e-tailer Mr. Porter. The elite spy organization lands in Kentucky where they meet their U.S. counterparts the Statesmen, which means the Savile Row-inspired, made-in-Britain styles of the first film still available as part of the site’s core Kingsman collection (the double-breasted Prince of Wales “Harry” suit named after Colin Firth’s character, Cutler and Gross D-Frame sunglasses, Turnball & Asser double-cuff shirts and a new for The Golden Circle natty-as-hell orange velvet smoking jacket worn by Taron Egerton as "Eggsy") are also accompanied by rugged made-in-America Jean Shop denim and shearling-lined jackets, low-key but high-style Todd Snyder sweat suits, classic Stetson hats and Mister Freedom leather bomber jackets, not to mention "Statesmen" belt buckles that double as whiskey flasks.
“It’s the Mt. Rushmore of Americana,” Phillips tells The Hollywood Reporter of the 80-piece collection created in the pre-production and shooting phase with Mr. Porter managing director Toby Bateman. “Costume-to-collection is a model in the industry people talk about all the time,” Phillips says, but doing it with a global online platform is what it takes to launch merchandising within a narrative and do it right.”
For the ladies, Julianne Moore as a maniacal Martha Stewart-like villain has a lot of glam get-ups in the fast-paced, visually-stunning film, too.
Premieres Sept. 7 in New York; opens Sept. 22.
House of Z, directed by Canadian journalist Sandy Chronopoulos, tells the tale of Zac Posen's journey to becoming a designer known for his glamorous gowns as well as the family drama that came with it.
The fashion house started as a family affair, with his mother Susan and older sister Alexandra helping run the company and his original atelier set up in the family's apartment. That is until his sister had left the company in frustration and his mother had been replaced as CEO in 2013.
"I think if you're going to make a movie today, especially about the creative process, then you‘ve got to tell an honest story. I wouldn’t have been interested in putting myself into a puff piece," says Posen, adding that his family is "happy" with film.
The doc also centers on Posen's fall 2014 runway show.
Available for rent Sept. 6 exclusively at Vogue.com.