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5 times when designers appeared on screen

Pierpaolo Piccioli in “The Morning Show” is just the latest case

5 times when designers appeared on screen Pierpaolo Piccioli in “The Morning Show” is just the latest case

While for those who work within the fashion bubble many designers are celebrities in their own right, it can happen that the general public does not know them - which makes their occasional appearance in films and TV series a gift that directors give to insiders. The designers themselves often lend themselves with pleasure to these (otherwise rare) appearances, which can therefore really be counted on the tips of one's fingers. If to date only one designer, Tom Ford, has sat behind the camera to direct a film in his own right (and Ford has directed two), there are many others who have decided to appear on screen, immortalising their own glory on film. 

Here are the most famous cases.

Pierpaolo Piccioli in The Morning Show (2023)

The most recent case of a designer appearing on screen is on television, in the series The Morning Show. In the episode Strict Scrutiny, Valentino sponsors a gala in support of the Fashion Institute of Technology's where the star of the series, Jennifer Aniston, meets a Pierpaolo Piccioli in a state of grace, complete with dinner jacket and sunglasses. Of course, Aniston wears a custom Valentino dress for the occasion.

Marc Jacobs in Disconnect (2012)

Perhaps the best of the cases mentioned in this list. While many designers play themselves on screen, Marc Jacobs decided to forgo glamour altogether and, in the psychological drama Disconnect, took on the role of Harvey, a kind of sordid pimp who runs an erotic chatroom in which underage strippers perform. The best part is that Jacobs is normally known for his likability and his always polished style, so to see him play a rough and tumble criminal shows how much the designer loves a challenge and knows how to overcome it.

Donatella Versace and Tom Ford in Zoolander (2001)

Zoolander is The Devil Wears Prada for people who don't take fashion too seriously. Virtually every scene in the film is absolutely iconic and perhaps one of the best insider jokes ever is the collection that the designer Mugatu, the film's villain, wants to present which is a parody of Dior's Haute Couture FW00 collection inspired by the homeless. The film is full of cameos by big names in fashion and entertainment, especially David Bowie who stars in a fantastic skit, but some fashion heavyweights also appear on screen, such as Donatella Versace, who accompanies Zoolander to an award ceremony and appears in a blink-and-you-miss-it moment and Tom Ford who sings Zoolander's praises on the red carpet. Funny note: Zoolander wears a Gucci FW00 piece, designed by Ford himself, for another scene in the film.

Valentino in The Devil Wears Prada (2006)

The film starring Meryl Streep and Anne Hathaway is perhaps the most iconic of modern fashion movies - and perhaps also the last one that can bear this title without anyone laughing at it. In this film there is also the scene that Pierpaolo Piccioli's appearance in The Morning Show seems to quote so directly, namely the encounter between Miranda Priestly and Valentino Garavani. Those who wish to squint and block the film at the right moment will also see his long-time business partner Giancarlo Giammetti appear alongside the designer.

Jean-Paul Gaultier, Gianfranco Ferrè, Issey Miyake & Thierry Mugler in Prêt-à-Porter (1994)

@byluisvenegas Prêt-À-Porter, 1994 Directed by Robert Altman _________________________________ #LVMoviesLove #KimBasinger #Cher #editor #fypシ #foryourpage #LuisVenegas original sound - Luis Venegas

Robert Altman's film, set in the days of Paris Fashion Week and as chaotic as Paris can be at those times, is perhaps the ultimate fashion movie, the most comprehensive, the grandest. The film is a sort of choral parody that follows a platoon of different characters moving between shows and presentations. Substantially all the 90s supermodels (including Naomi) appear in the film, but above all a gigantic amount of designers including Jean-Paul Gaultier along with Bjork, Gianfranco Ferrè, Issey Miyake, Thierry Mugler, Sonia Rykiel and Christian LaCroix, all of whom are featured in the clip above, joined by Cher and Rossy de Palma. To make it even more realistic, the filming was done during the SS94 edition of Paris Fashion Week so everything you see happening in the background is absolutely real.