‘The New Look’ explores the dark origins of French fashion
“The New Look” on Apple TV+ traces the origins of Dior and Chanel. (Apple TV+ photo)

PARIS: The world of fashion makes for eye-catching TV shows, but the makers of The New Look, which depicts the origins of Dior and Chanel, believe that behind the glossy façade lies a dark ethical agenda. I showed that.

Fashion-based dramas are very popular right now.

Disney+ has already shown “Balenciaga” and will soon release the luxury series “Kaiser Karl” about Karl Lagerfeld, “House of Gucci,” “Saint Laurent” and “Phantom Thread.” , “Mrs. Harris is going to Paris.”

For those unfamiliar with the history of French haute couture, “The New Look,” streaming on Apple TV starting Wednesday, may seem like a modest addition to the genre.

It focuses on Christian Dior and Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel, played by Ben Mendelsohn and Juliette Binoche, and traces the harrowing years of the Nazi occupation of Paris.

Chanel’s actions during the war continue to be debated among historians, with many criticizing her cooperation.

She closed her business when the Nazis took over, but continued to live a luxurious life at the Ritz Hotel, took a German officer as her lover, and used anti-Semitic laws to seize control of the company from her Jewish business partners. I tried to steal it.

“It’s easy to believe that they would do the right thing in that situation, but these characters are in fear for their lives and I think it’s very difficult to judge them,” producer Todd Kessler told AFP. ” he said.

“Dior, Chanel, Balenciaga, Balmain, all these people were making decisions about how to survive,” he added.

“Painful story”

“Maybe viewers feel one way about a character in the middle of an episode, but by the end they feel completely different. It is.”

The producers admitted they were nervous about offering Binoche the role of Chanel.

Co-producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura said: “We wanted a French icon to play a French icon, but we weren’t sure how the French actor would react, given France’s mixed feelings about Chanel.” “It was,” he said. “I was so happy that Juliet accepted it right away.”

Meanwhile, Dior is still suffering from the trauma of his sister’s deportation to a concentration camp, and his “New Look” designs have become a symbol of post-war France’s recovery and hope.

“This is a very beautiful and ambitious series about fashion,” said Pierre Groppo, Vanity Fair’s head of lifestyle.

“It gives us an image of Dior that we don’t have. We imagine him as a genius in the workshop. Many people don’t know this painful story that he and so many others went through. “Hmm,” he told AFP.

Binoche’s “subtle” performance was particularly appealing, he said.

Chanel “admittedly made decisions that weren’t always the right ones, but you have to remember that this is a lonely woman from a very modest background. It’s not like someone is overwhelmed by events.” We feel sensations.

“I’m looking forward to the second season when she comes back.”

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