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2013 September 24

Decoding Mademoiselle C With Carine Roitfeld

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Carine Roitfeld Carine Roitfeld
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(NEW YORK) In case you missed some of our fave features in The Daily in print as you were dashing from show to show this NYFW, we're rolling out some gems for your post-fash week recovery (or, perhaps, while you're en route to Paris!). The September Issue is soooooo 2009. Vive Mademoiselle C, the star-studded documentary on the making of Carine Roitfeld’s CR Fashion Book. The Daily got a sneak peek at the Fabien Constantdirected opus, and it’s packed with Carine-y deliciousness....

Did you have any reservations about the film?
When I watched it, I saw a lot of “me, me, me!” I hope people don’t think it’s pretentious. That wasn’t the point of the documentary. 

What was the point of the documentary?
The message is that fashion is fun, fashion is passion, and fashion is a dream.

Working for you sure looks like fun! What’s different about your approach?
I’m fearless, in a way, because of my dreams about fashion. I just try to make my dreams come true. It’s a message for young kids about working and about passion. Fashion should be an artistic business. And, yes, you can also have fun! That’s a very good message. There are anxious moments when you’re working—you’re going from airport to airport carrying bags—but at the end of the day [those bags] are filled with beautiful dresses!

Did you like being filmed?
I’m not an actress. It was very, very uncomfortable for me. When we said “yes” to [director] Fabien Constant, I didn’t know it would be so personal, and it was very difficult at times to be so visible and transparent. But we didn’t change or edit a lot of things. It’s Fabian’s film! I was surprised when I saw it, but everything in it is truthful and honest. I did it for the magazine to be a big buzz.

How did you feel seeing yourself onscreen?

Let’s just say when everyone is watching the film at the screening, we’ll be outside of the theater! [laughs]

What do you hope viewers will take away from it?
That, OK, it’s all under my name—CR is my name—but that it’s not just me! It’s a team magazine! I hope young people watching the documentary will understand this. 

Do you feel liberated working outside corporate publishing?
It’s very free, yes. I’m totally free. You’re not working for someone; you’re working for you. But you have to pay for it, in a way.

In what ways?
You have less luxury than at a big magazine. Starting up is very difficult. You have to call everyone yourself! But it’s rejuvenating, too, to fight again for everything. Then, after you start, you have to keep fighting to keep it alive.

We loved you singing in Russian.
That’s one of the best moments of the movie, don’t you think?  I’m half Russian, and I have always loved Russian music and singing. We were shooting couture in Paris at night and the model was wearing a Russian designer—the look was very Russian—so I started singing my favorite Russian song. People that like me, and share my passions, like to sing in Russian with me. It’s a part of my life. You see me do ballet, too! The documentary mixes all parts of my life, and singing in Russian makes me happy.

The models in the film are really pushed to the limits. Are you harder to work for than other editors?
I ask of them a lot, because I always want the models to participate in the shoot. For me, they are not just models—they are part of the team. I treat them more like actresses than models. They feel free to be in the skin of the woman I want to photograph. It’s harder work, but it’s more interesting for the models, too. It’s not enough to just be in front of the camera. When they shoot with me, it will be fun—and it will not take too long. That’s the reason they come to the magazine.

Where do you draw the line?

If they don’t want to be naked. I will never push them to be naked!




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