Edita Vilkeviciute as Coco Chanel in 1923.
>> Tom Ford is currently filming his directorial debut, and Wednesday, Karl Lagerfeld will show his own directorial debut, based on Coco Chanel's early years. Unlike Tom's feature film, Karl's film is only ten minutes — a length more fitting to kick off the showing of Chanel's Paris-Moscow collection in Paris. The presentation was originally supposed to take place in Moscow, but Karl changed his mind after Russian customs "wanted to have the clothes three weeks in advance, which means we wouldn't have been ready and the situation seemed risky, so we cancelled."
Shot in a Paris studio in two days, Karl's film is inspired by Mack Sennett's flickering black-and-white silent slapstick movies with "spliced in newsreel footage of WWI because I think it's interesting to juxtapose fashion with the horrible images of the trenches." Rather than cast extras — "they don't know how to touch the clothes" — Karl looked within his own posse to fill positions — muse Amanda Harlech and daughter Tallulah Ormsby-Gore as customer and model, Brad Kroenig as Chanel lover Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich, and bodyguard Sebastien Jondeau as a Russian general. For the role of Chanel, Karl went with Lithuanian model Edita Vilkeviciute — in character in the film stills below.