Ben Mendelsohn steps onto the catwalk as Christian Dior in the trailer for the new limited series “The New Look,” released by Apple TV+ on Wednesday.
The clip sets the scene for the intense competition Dior faced from contemporaries Coco Chanel (Juliette Binoche), Lucien Lelong (John Malkovich) and others such as Cristóbal Balenciaga, Pierre Cardin, Hubert de Givenchy and Pierre Balmain.
“Parisian couture could influence how thousands of ordinary women dream and live,” Glenn Close’s Carmel Snow says in the trailer. “But fashion needs a new leader. A figurehead.”
The historical drama series, inspired by true events and filmed exclusively in Paris, spotlights fashion designers Christian Dior, Coco Chanel and their contemporaries as they survived World War II and went on to influence modern fashion.
The 10-episode series is written, executive produced and directed by Todd A. Kessler, who co-created the FX drama series “Damages” and the Netflix series “Bloodline.” The show will make its global debut with the first three episodes on Wednesday, February 14, 2024 on Apple TV+, followed by one episode every Wednesday through April 3.
“I keep looking for a great collection to rise from the ashes of the war,” Snow continues.
“The New Look” takes place in Paris during the Nazi occupation of the French capital. The series centers on the moment in 20th-century Paris when the French city became the heart of a fashion revival led by icon Christian Dior.
“Christian Dior ruined French couture,” Binoche’s Chanel says as the clip picks up speed, set to Janelle Monáe’s “Haute.” “And I’m coming back to save it.”
Alongside Mendelsohn, Binoche, Malkovich and Close, the ensemble cast includes Maisie Williams (“Game of Thrones”) as Catherine Dior, Emily Mortimer (“Mary Poppins Returns”) as Elsa Lombardi and Claes Bang (“Bad Sisters”) as Spatz.
“For those of us who lived through the chaos of war, creation was survival,” Mendelsohn says in Dior’s thick French accent. “Creation cannot stop the bullets, but creation is our way forward.”
Dior’s rise to prominence with his groundbreaking, iconic imprint of beauty and influence clashes with Chanel’s reign as the world’s most famous fashion designer. The surprising stories of Dior’s contemporaries and rivals from Chanel to Pierre Balmain, Cristóbal Balenciaga and are sewn together to showcase the famous atelier’s history, designs and clothing created by Christian Dior through collaboration with the House of Dior. Chanel is described as “treacherous” by Malkovich’s Lucien Lelong in the clip.
“Are you happy with the revolution you started?” a woman asks Dior as the music shifts to Norah Jones’ “My Heart is Full.”
“There is the truth, but there is always another truth that lives behind it,” Dior answers.
The fashion show features a contemporary soundtrack curated and produced by Grammy winner Jack Antonoff. Viewers will be immersed in covers of popular early to mid-twentieth-century songs performed by artists including Bleachers, Florence Welch, Lana Del Rey, Matty Healy (The 1975), Beabadoobee, Nick Cave, Perfume Genius and more.
“The New Look” is produced by Apple Studios and DB-AK Productions, and is written, executive produced and directed by Kessler. Lorenzo di Bonaventura and Mark A. Baker also serve as executive producers.
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