NEW YORK — It’s shaping up to be a star-studded fall.
This story first appeared in the May 13, 2003 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Cate Blanchett has signed on as the new face of Donna Karan Collection and will appear for the next three seasons in the company’s ad campaigns. The first fall ads will be photographed later this month by Mikael Jansson. The campaign will be created by Laird + Partners, Karan’s ad agency.
The Australian actress, who turns 34 on Wednesday, has starred in such films as “Elizabeth,” “The Gift,” “Bandits,” “The Talented Mr. Ripley,” “The Shipping News,” and “Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers.”
Blanchett joins other celebrity models this fall, including Christina Aguilera, who will star in Versace’s ad campaign; Jennifer Lopez, who was photographed for Louis Vuitton, and Adrien Brody, who will appear exclusively in Ermenegildo Zegna this fall after appearing with others this spring.
Blanchett is the latest in a string of actors Karan has used in campaigns, including Jeremy Irons, Iman and Milla Jovovich.
“When people say, ‘Who would you like to dress?’ Cate was definitely on my top three,” said Donna Karan on Monday. She declined to divulge the other two. Although the two women haven’t met yet, Karan said she admires Blanchett’s “intelligence and womanliness.”
“There’s an exoticism about her. She’s intriguing and modern at the same time,” said Karan, who believes Blanchett is a natural for her fall collection, which leaned toward seductive suits, racy little dresses and body-conscious gowns. The contract calls for Blanchett to be photographed for the ads, but she won’t be making personal appearances on behalf of the company.
Considered a style icon, Blanchett’s dresses for her red carpet moments have run the gamut from Christian Dior and Valentino to Tom Ford’s Yves Saint Laurent, Jean Paul Gaultier and Vera Wang.
“It’s very important for me, in the context of ‘woman to woman,’ to go beyond a woman’s outer beauty,” said Karan. “It’s not about the clothes. She represents a sense of modernity and a timelessness. For me, it’s more than just a person, it’s a personal connection. I’m looking forward to meeting her.”