A new video by Cartier pays tribute to the glamour of Hollywood musicals while showcasing its latest exquisite designs
It’s nighttime in Paris and the City of Light; the playground for lovers, sparkles and shimmers as a beautiful woman sashays confidently along the French capital’s elegant streets.
From the Rue de la Paix to place Vendôme; from Concorde to Grand Palais, the radiant redhead turns heads in a stunning scarlet dress that swishes sensuously as her hips sway.
She is adorned in the most ravishing jewels: a gleaming, pear-shaped diamond necklace from the Royal Cartier High Jewellery Collection, and lustrous bracelets which enhance her luminous beauty.
She is clearly happy to be who she is: in that place, at that time, with all that she has and knows. Soon she will discover the ultimate treasure inside a red box: a surprise so delightful that a range of emotions light up her perfect features. The exquisite creation is a platinum ring paved with diamonds, from the Cartier High Jewellery Collection—a ring of ethereal beauty that she eagerly slips on her elegant finger.
Somewhere an orchestra strikes up an epic tune and a troupe of male dancers in tuxedoes appear to serenade her as she seductively sings, “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend.”
This is the outline of the captivating new film from Cartier created to showcase the brand’s latest dazzling designs. The film is titled All About Cartier Diamonds and it is directed by Johan Renck, the Swedish musician and award-winning director of music videos, TV shows and commercials who has worked with the likes of Madonna, Beyonce and Kylie Minogue as well as top-notch brands such as Nike, Mercedes, Dom Pérignon and Karl Lagerfeld for H&M. French magazine CB News named him “the Number One director of music videos and commercials in the world.” Renck has also directed episodes of Breaking Bad and The Walking Dead and he makes feature films, one of which has premiered at the prestigious Sundance Festival.
For those familiar with his work, this 90-second film is evocative of Renck’s style that incorporates music, emotion, beauty and romance. As he says, “I’ve become more and more inclined in my work to discover what sort of emotions I like to portray. [I have the] . . . creativity and the ability to transform that into action.”
For this film, Renck has clearly been heavily influenced by the Hollywood of yesteryear. Those who know their entertainment history will be agog at the multiple references to the wonderful array of musicals from Tinseltown in its heyday. The romantic—and often comedic—films of the 1930s, ‘40s and ‘50s, such as An American in Paris (1951) starring Gene Kelly and Leslie Caron and The Bandwagon (1953) starring Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse, which many critics consider just as sensational for its singing, dancing and romantic storyline as the better known Singing in the Rain starring Gene Kelly.
Casting Karen Elson as the star of this 90-second triumph is inspired: the English model and musician—dubbed “fashion’s favourite redhead” by American Vogue— delivers a bewitching performance.
Nashville-based Elson, who was once married to Jack White of the White Stripes, is a talented singer and founding member of the New York-based political cabaret troupe the Citizens Band. A much in-demand model, she has also graced the runways and fronted campaigns for the gamut of international designers including Marc Jacobs, Chanel, Yves Saint Laurent, Dior, Gucci, et al as well as appearing in numerous short films.
For this video Elson is styled to resemble a contemporary Rita Hayworth, Ginger Rogers or Marilyn Monroe—the Hollywood sirens who once lit up the silver screen with their talent, vivacity and unique brand of traditional Hollywood glamour.
The gorgeous, floaty, dimmed-hem dress is remarkably similar to that designed for dancer and actress Cyd Charisse for her classic dance sequence in The Bandwagon musical, while the song ‘Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend’, was, of course, made famous by Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell in the 1953 film, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (also filmed in Paris).
It may be an old-fashioned love story, but this film is a brought bang up-to-date by a multi-talented team and, of course, Cartier’s incomparable jewellery.
BRILLIANT NIGHT The lady in Cartier’s film
wears a pear-shaped diamond necklace from the Royal Cartier High