Are you as hyped about the upcoming FW24 shows as we are? If so, we invite you to dive even deeper into the world of beauty, intrigue and fashion. We've rounded up 7 incredible films about designers who made their mark in the history of fashion. These are the stories of personal triumphs and defeats, the inner workings of the fashion industry, the nuances of the creative process, and the battle for control.
Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist (2018)
A rebel at heart, Vivienne Westwood redefined British fashion and played a key role in popularizing punk aesthetics during the late 1970s. Today, we all know Vivienne's brand as a symbol of provocative, in ways, theatrical and extravagant clothing. "Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist" focuses on Viviene’s designs and journey to success, but also explores her activism, relationships with Sex Pistols’ manager Malcolm McLaren, and her influence on the fashion industry and culture. The film blends archival footage, beautifully crafted reconstructions, and insightful interviews with the iconic designer’s network of collaborators.
Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video
Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist; Finished Films / Roxanna Films / Sharp House
"McQueen" is a personal look into the life, career, and extraordinary mind of the British fashion designer, Alexander McQueen. The documentary features a collection of recovered archive footage and exclusive interviews with the couturier's closest friends and family. From his humble beginnings as an apprentice on Mayfair's Savile Row to launching his own brand in 1992 and gaining notice as a chief designer for Givenchy, McQueen's story might have seemed like a dream, but in reality, it was much darker.
McQueen, Bleecker Street / Ann Ray
Saint Laurent (2014)
Starring Gaspard Ulliel, "Saint Laurent" was one of two biopics about the designer to be released in 2014. The film transports viewers to the 1970s, when Yves's career was at its peak. At bohemian Parisian soirées, in Marrakech, amidst Warhol's canvases and within Proust's books, Saint Laurent seeks both answers to questions and inspiration. Director Bertrand Bonello not only tells the story of a great couturier but also masterfully paints a picture of a bygone era.
Saint Laurent, EuropaCorp / Mandarin Cinéma / Sony Pictures Classics
Coco Before Chanel (2009)
What was Coco Chanel's life like before her time of glory? Anne Fontaine's biopic "Coco Before Chanel" opens the door to the French designer's fascinating life. With Audrey Tautou as the main lead, the film invites viewers to accompany Coco on her life journey from her boarding school years to the birth of the world-famous fashion house. More than a story about a fashion icon, "Coco Before Chanel" shows the innermost feelings and personal tragedies of the real Gabrielle.
Coco Before Chanel, Haut et Court / Ciné@ / France 2 Cinéma / Sony Pictures Classics
Martin Margiela In His Own Words (2019)
After more than a decade since leaving his eponymous brand, Martin Margiela looks back at his 20-year career. The most mysterious designer of our time, he has never shown his face to the public and has always preferred to let his clothes speak for themselves. Throughout his career, Margiela worked as an assistant to Jean-Paul Gaulthier, was the Creative Director of Hermes and formed his signature style, giving the world over 40 provocative collections. The documentary features commentaries by leading fashion figures, including Jean-Paul Gaulthier, Carine Roitfeld, and Lidewij Edelkoort.
Martin Margiela In His Own Words, Oscilloscope
Cristóbal Balenciaga (2024)
"Cristóbal Balenciaga" is an ongoing TV series that chronicles the rise of the iconic Spanish designer. It's 1937, and Balenciaga debuts his first haute couture collection in Paris. Behind him is a successful career in Madrid, where he dresses the Spanish elite and aristocracy. However, his visionary designs don't satisfy the sophisticated tastes of the Parisian fashion world dominated by Chanel, Dior, and Givenchy. Driven by ambition, Cristóbal Balenciaga navigates obstacles to define his unique style and ultimately becomes one of the most important designers of all time.
Where to watch: Disney+
Cristóbal Balenciaga, Disney+ / David Herranz
House of Gucci (2021)
Based on a 2001 book and inspired by a shocking true story, House of Gucci is about jealousy, greed, glamour and, in the end, murder. The biopic chronicles the relationship and then marriage between Patrizia Reggiani (portrayed by Lady Gaga) and Maurizio Gucci (played by Adam Driver), as their love story transforms into a power struggle over the iconic Italian fashion brand. An incredible setting, an A-list cast and an intriguing plot - House of Gucci grips from the very beginning.
House of Gucci, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer / Bron Creative / Scott Free Productions