MILAN – Can a meeting on a film set lead to a love story? Yes, according to Wim Wenders and Salvatore Ferragamo.
The acclaimed director and the luxury brand have teamed up to create the Florentine label’s fall 2021 ad campaign, promoting the latest collection designed by former creative director Paul Andrew.
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True to the futuristic vibe of the lineup, Wenders has crafted a sci-fi movie-inspired video titled “A Future Together”. Chronicle of a budding love story on the set of a sci-fi adventure, the protagonists of the video are a director, played by emerging Italian actress Gaia Girace – who made her international debut as Lila Cerullo on the TV show “My Brilliant Friend” based on Elena Ferrante’s eponymous book – and a sound engineer, a role played by Swedish artist and musician Felix Wilhelm Sandman, a member of popular boy band FO&O. While working together on the set, the two get to know each other and fall in love.
Designed by Wenders to “look to the future with optimism”, the ad was filmed in the new City Life business development in Milan.
Here, Wenders discusses the concept behind the campaign with WWD and reveals details of its “making of”.
WWD: The sci-fi atmosphere tends to be dark and gloomy. How did you introduce positivity?
Wim Wenders: You point to the heart of the matter. Most science fiction movies are dystopian. Do you remember a science fiction movie that portrays an upbeat picture of the world? I can not. I guess that’s because science fiction, in its nature, deals primarily with the times it’s made of. His idea of the future is motivated by the respective present. Science fiction films always describe the greatest fears of the time they were made.
All of us today, still living in the constraints and horror of the only pandemic our generations have ever faced, are not exactly looking to a bright future, with the climate crisis, the migration issue and the issue. unresolved poverty that hangs over everything. So, today more than ever, a positive attitude was and remains a challenge. How to overcome this? If you had the time to develop a true story, I could think of a few solutions. But in an advertisement, you don’t have time. Which made it simple: the most direct path to a positive attitude was to introduce a love affair, which I did.
The client was a little surprised at first, but then realized that this was a clear and simple way to avoid the dystopia trap. In fact, they had cited a few sci-fi movies to me that they liked, especially for their looks, including Gattaca. I love this movie, but man, it’s still dystopian and dark. But, of course, the client didn’t want dark at all, that’s understandable. So I tried to transform a possibly dystopian atmosphere into a happy and energetic one. And the key to that was the love story in its midst.
WWD: How was the work with Felix and Gaia?
WW: Pure joy. And pure luck. I hadn’t known any of them before. I saw videos, clips of films or series that they had made. And then I saw them in person. And I immediately liked the youthful presence they both gave off. Yet both also had a certain sincerity towards them. But who would have thought it worked so well? The two got along very well from the start. And we created a filming climate that allowed them to bring a part of themselves, their own personalities or peculiarities, their own improvisations. They were a blast. I would not hesitate to work with both on a longer format.
WWD: How was the shooting in a new Milan, which is very different from the postcard image of Italy?
WW: It was another challenge. I had decided to be in Milan two weeks before the shoot, so that I could develop my script from places I would find in the city. The idea of a sci-fi environment depended entirely on finding the right places. So we searched for days and days. Nothing convinced me. There were a few futuristic places, but some were too well known, and some just didn’t give me the freedom to shoot. I need 360 degree scenery, can’t shoot in one direction. And then there was this terrible and most depressing inconvenience: it was February! Milan can be very dropping and rainy and gray throughout February, especially in the midst of a pandemic.
And then I found this neighborhood around “City Life Park” and MiCo, the new Milan Convention Center. That was it, I knew at first glance. All we needed was some sun. And hey, it was raining throughout pre-production, and on both days of filming, the sun was shining and our places were beautiful, fun, and hopeful. Sometimes you need a little help from the weather angels.
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