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REEL EMPOWERED: “We’ve never directed, and we all have different personalities and different approaches,” a Catherine Malandrino-clad Demi Moore said of her directing debut, along with actress Courteney Cox and screenwriter Kirsten Smith, for Glamour magazine’s fourth annual “Reel Moments” screening. “But our producers were saints, helping us deliver both a good product and a great experience so that we might see more female directors out there.” Glamour’s gala, sponsored by Suave, lauded fresh opportunities for women to express themselves creatively by letting actresses and writers claim the director’s seat for one of three short films. Past “Reel Moments” directors Rita Wilson, Jennifer Aniston and Kirsten Dunst also came to celebrate, as did Moore’s husband, Ashton Kutcher.

“I want to impart to women that they should just be undaunted in the way they live their lives, not letting rejection get them down,” said Smith, director of the short “The Spleenectomy,” starring Anna Faris as a ditzy mom who takes an unexpected route to becoming an actress.

This story first appeared in the October 16, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Moore’s “Streak,” starring Brittany Snow and Rumer Willis, likewise focused on overcoming obstacles by tenderly tackling female body image issues. Cox’s “The Monday Before Thanksgiving” rounded out the theme of empowerment with its tale of a woman who, distraught over the death of her mother, learns how to let go. Featuring a performance by Laura Dern, the movie’s optimism seemed to rub off on its star: “The time is here when there is no stigma about women directing,” Dern affirmed. “Make movies, make movies, make movies.”

— Jeremy Allen

SAFETY IN NUMBERS: New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelly isn’t worried about rising crime as the Dow falls, but is concerned about how the economy could affect the city’s ability to battle terrorism. “I don’t expect to see former Lehman Brothers employees robbing a 7-Eleven,” he said to attendees at the Men’s Vogue Visionaries breakfast Wednesday morning at Lever House. “[But] we can’t afford…to take our eye off the ball. Now, when we’re in this economic situation that we’re in, we may, in fact, be more vulnerable.” Kelly outlined the city’s counterterrorism initiatives, which include installing 1,000 cameras in Lower Manhattan, opening a security command center there and using radiation detectors, which can detect threats up to 15 miles outside the city. He admitted it was “difficult to say” whether the economic crisis would stall the implementation of any parts of those plans. Aside from measures to protect Lower Manhattan, which he described as “the most sensitive 1.7 square miles in the country,” Kelly said New York’s subway system is a particular point of concern, and he’s hoping for more cameras there. As for his boss, Mayor Bloomberg, running for a third term, “I’m for it,” said Kelly (who, of course, is a politician himself). A former Marine and holder of masters degrees from New York University and Harvard, Kelly was asked what police character on TV most resembled him. “Stephen Colbert,” Kelly joked, before adding, “Harvey Keitel,” since they look alike.

— Stephanie D. Smith

THE LANGUAGE OF FASHION: The seventh issue of the biannual Acne Paper, which will launch tonight with a party at the New York Public Library, has a few unlikely interview subjects, though none more so than Noam Chomsky. The MIT linguist agreed to speak to correspondent Karin Strom about the nature of trends in language after receiving an interview request from editor in chief Thomas Persson, who sent along back copies of the magazine, which included an interview with philosopher Ken Wilber. “It was interesting to speak to Chomsky about language because it is something we use everyday, a subject of great tradition, but also of constant change — not unlike fashion, if you think about it,” explained Persson.

The magazine’s fall-winter issue, which features a fashion layout with Guinevere Van Seenus shot by Daniel Jackson as well as an interview with and photo essay by Nan Goldin, focuses on “tradition,” emphasizing established — though not entirely obvious — players in design, photography, politics, art and sport (the latter subject highlighted by an interview with 1972 Olympic gold medal gymnast Olga Korbut). While Persson, whose Sweden-based company has grown to include film, digital and advertising departments, said the magazine isn’t intended to “promote the Acne clothes, but rather to reflect the creative culture that is Acne,” and the fashion pages include plenty of Acne credits, from a mesh top to a black knit hat (Dries Van Noten, Junya Watanabe and Jonathan Saunders also make appearances). Rounding out the cast of subjects in the issue, which has a print run of 25,000 and will be available in bookstores, galleries and museums, are Fashion Institute of Technology fashion historian Valerie Steele; Rupert Thomas, editor in chief of The World of Interiors, and Robert Watson, whose official title is Head of the Guild of Professional English Butlers.

— Sarah Haight

Correction: Thomas Persson is creative director of Acne Paper, and Jonny Johansson is creative director of Acne, the company's clothing line. This was unclear in the item "The Language of Fashion."
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