Friday, October 4, 2013

House of Versace

Well this should be fun.

Take the elements of money, sibling rivalry, fame, and murder against a backdrop of over the top fashion coupled with the inimitable Donatella Versace and you have all the makings of a very entertaining made for television movie.

Based on the book House of Versace: The Untold Story of Genius, Murder and Survival by Wall Street Journal reporter Deborah Ball, Gina Gershon does an uncanny dead-on performance of the iconic Italian fashion designer and sister of the late Gianni Versace in the Lifetime production (airing Friday, October 5th, 8:00 PM ET). The biopic focuses on Donatella's role in the fashion house after her brother's murder in 1997, weaving in the dramas of her drug addiction, near bankruptcy of the company and eventual triumph as she rebuilds the Versace brand. (Rumor has it the real Donatella is not pleased with the production). House of Versace also starts Raquel Welch as her aunt and Enrico Colantoni (Person of Interest) as Gianni.

The hour long documentary "Versace: Beyond the Headlines" that follows the film (10:00 PM ET) promises a fascinating look into Gianni's multi-million dollar fashion empire. Between this and the new fall shows, I may need another Tivo.

Actress Gina Gershon

Colantoni, Gershon and actor Colm Feore as brother Santo 
Santo, Donatella and Gianni Versace

Raquel Welch in a Versace creation

One of the many lavishly sets from Production designer Patricia Christie
Photo Credits: Lifetime/Jan Thjis, Telegraph

Monday, September 30, 2013

The Divine Dante

The Age of Innocence, The Aviator, Meet Joe Black, Interview With the Vampire and most recently, Hugo are just a few of the incredible celluloid worlds created by Academy Award winning production designer Dante Ferretti. With a body of work that includes 50 feature films, 24 operas and collaborations with directors Fellini, Zefferelli, Scorsese, and Coppola, his designs are at long last  being celebrated at New York's Museum of Modern Art.

Dante Ferretti: Design and Construction for the Cinema features a large scale multimedia installation with  original set pieces from his Oscar winning films (Hugo, Sweeney Todd and The Aviator) and a six month retrospective of 22 films showcasing his exceptional work (much of it designed with wife of 35 years and set decorator Francesca Lo Schiavo).

The exhibit opened September 28th and runs through February 9th. For more information, see the museum's site here.

The train station clock, a centerpiece of the film Hugo

Getting ready for its closeup at the Museum of Modern Art

Ferretti's Golden Age of Hollywood sets for The Aviator with Leo DiCaprio

Kate Beckinsale as Ava Gardner in The Aviator
The Age of Innocence with Michelle Pfeiffer and Daniel Day Lewis

Ferretti's drawings for The Age of Innocence above and below

Drawings for Mrs. Mingott's conservatory

Meet Joe Black with Brad Pitt

Photo Credits: Museum of Modern Art, Warner Brothers