Constance Jablosnki at the exihibit. Images courtesy of Vogue Italia.
Beer and Vogue Italia, two things I love that don’t often come together– until very recently.
Peroni Nastro Azzurro, the premium Italian beer, has launched an exhibit of 30 behind-the-scenes videos celebrating Vogue Italia’s 50th anniversary. The Visionary World of Vogue Italia was presented to a full house of party-goers, including Baz Luhrmann, Zachary Quinto, and Harley Viera Newton at Industria Studios in New York City.
Each video reveals an intimate portrait of individuals who have either been featured in or contributed to the magazine in some way. Highlights from the exhibition include footage of Miles Aldridge’s photographs, art by Vanessa Beecroft, and insights from filmmakers like Quentin Tarantino.
The Visionary World of Vogue Italia runs from the 15-22 October at Industria, Studio 10 in New York. The exhibition is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and is free to the public.
Happy 52nd birthday to Australian filmmaker Baz Luhrmann, known for directing such films as Romeo + Juliet, Moulin Rouge, and The Great Gatsby. A softy for a love story, Luhrmann seems to have a fetish for the doomed couple in his movies, frequently casting the likes of heartbreakers Leonardo Di Caprio and Nicole Kidman. Enjoy the best of his work along with a motivational music video he made called “Everybody’s Free To Wear Sunscreen.”
Whether your preference lies in Kenneth Brannaugh, Ethan Hawke, or Mel Gibosn, it’s evident than modern adaptations of William Shakespeare’s Hamlet are of a vast variety. But when it comes to those modern variations on Billy Shakes’ text, what’s important is to breathe fresh life into the work—even if the film may not be everyone’s precise cup of tea, the filmmaker must do what’s possible to bring the words to life in a way that we couldn’t simply gain from the words on the page. And although Brannaugh’s myriad Shakespearean revivals have been wonderful, the personal to really revitalize the genre was Mr. Baz Luhrmann himself, who gave us 1996’s masterpiece Romeo + Juliet.
Juxtaposing modernity with the antiquated text, Baz brought Radiohead and Garbage to Verona and crafted a fierce take on the classic tragedy that was as aesthetically stunning as it was emotionally potent. So with his adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby waltzing into theaters this week, Baz has revealed to THR that he would like to next tackle his own version of Hamlet—starring his Romeo, his Gatsby, Leonardo DiCaprio. Be still my heart.
"To me, Gatsby is the American Hamlet. What else could we possibly do as a follow-up?" said Baz, although "i’s just a dream at this point." But as we all know, Leo’s performance as Romeo was one of the best he’s ever delivered—the third act of that film worthy of a closet full of Oscars alone. So with all hope this is a film that will actually come about. In the meantime, let’s watch some behind-the-scenes footage from Romeo + Juliet.
I remember sitting in the theater as the credits rolled on opening night of Martin Scorsese’s Shutter Island. As Max Richter’s "On the Nature of Daylight" played softly, my best friend and I sat in silence, quietly weeping to ourselves. And although the film was a wonderfully-shot journey of psychological thrill, it was Leonardo DiCaprio’s performance that moved us to tears. Did we have our own flair for the dramatic? Yes. But really, he was just so good we couldn’t help but succumb to our emphatic emotions.
But it’s always that way—no matter the film, in the twenty years that he’s been gracing our screens, Leo has never given a bad performance. Whether he’s playing a mentally-handicapped teenager coping with the strains of family, an infamous imposter conning his way around the world, a family man wrestling with the trials of love, or a psychopathic slave-owner, he always delivers a performance that’s brimming with conviction, intensity, charm, and agility—with that signature essence of Leo that lingers even when he disappears into his characters.
And this week, we’ll see him take on one of his most anticipated roles yet as the iconic role of Jay Gatsby in Baz Luhrmann’s lavish reimagining of F. Scott Fitzgerlad’s The Great Gatsby. So in honor of, what I am sure is to be another brilliant performance, here’s a look at some of Leo’s best roles throughout the years. And for good measure, a few old interviews with the young star before he went on to be Hollywood’s most beloved leading man. Enjoy.
This week marks the mightily postponed release of jazz-age drama The Great Gatsby, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire and Carey Mulligan. But! Did you know that The Great Gatsby has already been a movie four times, dating all the way back to 1926? It’s also come to my attention that The Great Gatsby was once even written down and typeset as, for lack of a better term, a novel. Serious Luhrmann fans are tracking down this mysterious artifact, hoping for a clue as to what might happen in his groundbreaking new film.
Beware, however! There are spoilers aplenty in this text, apparently penned by a hapless and/or disgruntled drunk. If you read it before seeing the Luhrmann version, you’ll already know about narrator Nick Carraway’s latent homosexuality, not to mention the fateful car accident that brings the story to a climax. You’ll find out that Gatsby is not what he pretends to be. Most alarmingly, you’ll learn of the final shocking twist: that there’s a green light and time is kinda weird.
If you want my advice, go into this Baz Luhrmann epic cold. Sometimes we have to trust a peerless auteur to get his message across effectively rather than scrounge around for some Cliff Notes or what have you. And with a running time of two and a half hours, the movie can be viewed in fifteen fewer minutes than it would take to get through all those troubling and ambiguous words! You’ll get a much better sense of the period hairstyles, too.
With every new addition we hear in full, it seems that the Jay-Z-produced soundtrack to Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby gets weirder and weirder, and perhaps more disjointed. After Beyoncé and Andre 3000’s cover of Amy Winehouse’s “Back to Black” turned out to be kind of a bummer, we were hoping that Emeli Sandé’s take on Beyoncé with the Bryan Ferry Orchestra, a cover of her mega-hit “Crazy in Love,” would fare a bit better. And it does, but to be fair, expectations were pretty low after “Back to Black.”
Sandé’s vocals are fantastic, and it’s awesome that she’s on a very hyped soundtrack for a very hyped movie right now so more people are exposed to her music through it. And the orchestra, while gifted, feels a little hokey with the muted trumpet, like it’s trying real hard to set the scene for the 1920s, but oh look, it’s a contemporary pop song!
It definitely feels very Baz Luhrmann, if that makes sense—like it’s the Gatsby equivalent of the pop songs in Moulin Rouge! that were shoved into that cabaret environment. Nevertheless, it’s one of the soundtrack’s better offerings. Listen below, and then listen to two other solid covers of “Crazy in Love”—the similar-sounding Puppini Sisters version and Antony & The Johnsons’ heartbreaking ballad version.
Well, the gang’s all here, folks! Might as well print these out, make a flip book, and throw on what’s streaming of the soundtrack, because with 50 new photos, we can basically watch Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby on our own now. Out in two short weeks and opening the Cannes Film Festival this month, the highly-anticipated picture has given us a deluge of material that keeps rolling in, feeding us spoonful after spoonful of Luhrmann’s decadent cake topping of a movie. And although I can finally admit my undeniable thrill to see his lavish literary adaptation, there are some things I’d like to leave to the imagination until the film’s premiere. Remember when that was possible?
Anyhow, check out a collection of gorgeous new stills below and the rest over at The Playlist. And if these photos have tickeld your fascination with the film, see more Gatsby realted news here, here, and here.
Another week, and The Great Gatsby hype snowball rolls faster and gains more circumference. And, following the releases of new jams from the packed, Jay-Z-helmed soundtrack including Florence + The Machine’s big and loud "Over the Love," we’ve got another new offering this week.
This time, the new track comes from oh-so-relaxing British Medical Association-approved sleep aids The xx. It’s called “Together,” and it’s very gentle and slow-burning and nice, which are all adjectives one could use to describe a lot of songs by The xx.
The only thing is that after trailers featuring the bumping “No Church in the Wild” and the weird, yowling Filter cover of “Happy Together,” as well as bolder soundtrack offerings, and given the general over-the-top nature of Gatsby himself, Baz Luhrmann and, from first impressions, this movie, the track almost seems too subtle for something so totally, well, unsubtle. Listen below.