On Thursday, September 24, 2009, filmmaker Matt Tyrnauer appeared at the Lincoln Theatre, South Beach to discuss his experience in the making of the film, Valentino: The Last Emperor
with guest of the Miami International Fashion Week. The event was a
fundraiser for the Miami Fashion Week Foundation, according to Beth
Sobol, founder of Miami Fashion Week. MIFW hosted this event in effort
to raise funds that will benefit emerging designers and students of
fashion, photography, film and graphic design involved with the Miami International Fashion Week 2010 competitions.
VIP guests of MIFW were invited to an exclusive cocktail reception
where they had a chance to mingle and be photographed with the director.
The event was well attended, and local celebrities including, Miami's
drag queen diva, Elaine Lancaster were present to support the Miami
Fashion Week Foundation. Delicious bites were provided by neighborhood
restaurant, Tiramesu and wines by Barefoot Wines. On display were art
work from Romero Britto, the classic red Valentino dress, along with
several other items for the silent auction.
Valentino: The Last Emperor was a rare look into the
world of an Icon, a fashion king, a genius, a celebrated and respected
fashion designer, perfectionist, and lover of all things beautiful, Valentino Garavani. Through the lens of Matt Tyrnauer,
viewers were able to see the personal, professional and at times
amusing side of this man who has a sincere passion for fashion and have
devoted over 40 years of his life to his art and his partnership with
“When I was a child I would dream about everything beautiful in the
world,” as a result he created “beautiful dresses for women who actually
wear them“. Over the years Valentino draped women of the international
society including Lady Diana and Elizabeth Taylor and more in his
beautiful garbs. The level of work he produced and the basic
understanding of a woman's body (the dress-the movement) have earned him
respect and recognition all over the world.
Filmmaker and journalist Matt Tyrnauer, special
correspondence for Vanity Fair Magazine, has written about several high
profile public figures including Martha Stewart, Philippe Starck and
others. He has written about Valentino for Vanity Fair as well as
directed and produced, Valentino: The Last Emperor. Here
he shares his experience with us on the filming of the "King of
Couture", Valentino. Premier Guide Miami had the chance to talk with Matt Tyrnauer about his experience on following the final two years of the fashion Icon, Valentino’s career.
Here is the exclusive interview with Yetunde Taiwo and Matt Tyrnauer, director of Valentino: The Last Emperor.
PGM: Of all the designers in the world, why Valentino?
MT: I wanted to make a movie about the end of an ERA
and Valentino was the last great master of high fashion working in the
world. I happened to be with him for two years and it was final two
years of his career, so we really wanted it to be the passing of an era
and a very important era in the history of fashion. Valentino’s career
has span through the golden age of the 20thcentury
withclients like Jackie Kennedy Onassis on to present day with Julia
Roberts and Gwyneth Paltrow, he designed for them. He was really the
genius, central man of Hollywood, high fashion and the quintessential
man of the red carpet. We got complete access to him and we really get
to see a genius at work and you see him from the height of his powers to
the day he decided to hang up the last dress and to walk out the door.
PGM: How did you find inspiration to do this documentary? Were there any challenges in approaching him to do this project?
MT: I think it was a sort of inner calling. I am not a
fashion person at all-it’s not my field-that’s not my expertise. When I
met Valentino I saw someone who was clearly an artistic genius also
commercially very successful. The movie is about two people Valentino
and Giancarlo Giammetti his lifelong partner in business and life. It is
about a very extraordinary relationship, not just about dresses but two
people who went on a journey together and created something truly
extraordinary. Even though Valentino is an icon for half a century, you
really don’t know the real story-you don’t really know what happened
behind the scenes to allow him to have the level of success he had.
That’s really what inspired me to make the story because I saw their
unique journey and I thought that was worthy of a film.
PGM: What do you want the viewers to walk away with that they never knew before about Valentino?
MT: I think people feel like they know who Valentino
is; they know he is the master of a certain kind of glamour. They know
that he is a person who is very adept at circulating with famous people
and movie stars. He is a figure of high society, but really what you see
is a true human being behind this man of inspiration, genius. I think
that at the end of the film you admire Valentino not because he is
wealthy, not because he is talented, and he is, you will admire him
because he is a human being who is a self created person. He started
with nothing and he had a dream, fulfilled his dream to the fullest
extent and that’s a very rare story among humans. People have a lot of
dreams that go unfulfilled, I think Valentino could be an inspiration to
us all because he achieved his dream and he did it in a fashion that
very few people have done before and very few people will do after him.
...“After me, the flood”
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