TWICE AS NICE: Forget the pearl earring: Scarlett Johansson is a girl becoming synonymous with Louis Vuitton handbags. The actress, who appears in the French brand’s current campaign, will do an encore in the forthcoming fall-winter spots as well. Word has it the ads will be shot next week in Los Angeles by Vuitton regulars Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott. Meanwhile, a select audience in Paris will next week get a first look at a fly-on-the-wall documentary about Vuitton’s creative director, Marc Jacobs. “We’re all pleased with the results,” said Dominique Miceli who, along with Loic Prigent, spent a year filming the designer’s work habits. The documentary is slated to air April 27 on the Franco-German TV channel Arte, and Miceli is in talks with international distributors.
HONORING ARNAULT: Bernard Arnault, chairman of LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, was presented on Tuesday with the title of Grand Officer of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Italy by the country’s state president Giorgio Napolitano. The award was bestowed at the Quirinale, the president’s official residence in Rome, in the presence of a group that included Arnault’s wife, Hélène; his daughter Delphine and her husband, Alessandro Vallarino Gancia; Michael Burke and Carla Fendi, respectively chief executive and president of the Fendi Group, and the French Ambassador, Yves Aubin de la Messuzière, who held a lunch at the embassy in honor of Arnault. A joint statement issued by Fendi and the Quirinale said the award underscored Arnault’s “value as a dynamic and farsighted entrepreneur who has invested in Italian fashion, recognizing its creativity whilst respecting its culture and origins.”
GREEN’S GETAWAY: Sir Philip Green may have built his Topshop empire on offering runway-worthy looks at modest prices, but when it comes to his own leisure time, it seems that only the best will do. To celebrate his 55th birthday on Thursday, Green is reported to be spending some 6 million pounds, or $11.5 million, to fly about 100 of his friends to a tropical hideaway in the Maldives. George Michael is said to be providing the entertainment during the four days of celebrations, which will center around a banquet on the beach on Thursday, and British press reports list guests including Kate Moss, Mick Jagger, Simon Cowell and David Tang. Green, Britain’s fifth-richest man, seems to have had little success keeping the details of the party a surprise for his guests, who were reported to have received travel wallets with the advice to “bring shorts” and to prepare for a long flight as the only clue to their destination. However, given Green’s past form, such largesse is no surprise. To celebrate his 50th birthday in 2002, Green dressed as Nero at a toga party for 200 guests in Cyprus, and Beyoncé and Andrea Bocelli were drafted to entertain guests at his son Brandon’s bar mitzvah in 2005, which had a reported budget of $7.25 million.