On Friday night in the East Village, the question on the minds of many guests at Kenzo’s fashion week party was: How does Humberto Leon do it? The co-creative director of the brand and his fellow Opening Ceremony founder Carol Lim threw a shindig inside Performance Space to celebrate their 25-minute film “The Everything,” which was released this week, alongside Kenzo’s fall collection. Oh, and they also have an entire OC line that will be revealed at a runway show on Sunday night. No big deal.
At the party, attendees could watch two screenings of the movie, which features Milla Jovovich, Jay Ellis, Alexandra Shipp and more. Most of the cast members — except Spike Jonze and Regina Hall, who were nowhere to be found — came by, including Zsela Thompson and Sasha Frolova.
Natasha Lyonne said she was working on “Orange Is the New Black” right before she made her way down to the Village. She was just one of the people wondering about Leon’s myriad abilities as a prolific designer.
“I’m always in awe, first of all in general, of fashion,” Lyonne said. “With the rate of turnover, the amount of vision and inspiration that must be in place to produce at that level so many times a year, it’s extraordinary. The way Humberto and Carol pull it off is so specifically brilliant. The movie is an extension of Humberto’s vision in that way.”
Leon confirmed that he’d dreamed up the narrative for the film before he started on the Kenzo collection.
“There was a meta thing happening, because the collection was all about films and genres of films. I knew that certain characters in ‘The Everything’ had to mirror that — Shelly needed to have pastels and I knew Bobby needed vests,” the designer explained. “It was all done together. In the movie, there’s a window that was in a store, and those are actually the windows that will appear in all the Kenzo stores.”
But for a designer like him, the wheel never stops turning, he said.
“Now I’m working on the next collection. By the time this thing comes out, we’re three collections in,” Leon explained. “It’s a fun little machine that we work toward.”
Jovovich, who Leon chose for the role of a mother because she’s a mom in real life, said she’s preparing for a film with her husband, Paul W.S. Anderson, called “Monster Hunter.” They’re heading to South Africa on Tuesday to train and have costume fittings, but Jovovich and family will be leaving New York first thing Sunday morning in order for her kids to make it to school on time on Monday.
When asked whether she knew that Leon picked her for “The Everything” to contribute some motherly insight, Jovovich said, “Humberto gave me the freedom to be myself and treat these kids as if they were my kids.
“It was a chance to experience what it would be like to have teenagers, which I’m still looking forward to — and not in a positive way, to be honest,” she said. “It was amazing to see how I would react if my daughter is doing something — which she eventually will — that I don’t approve of. I’m trying to be open, I’m trying to be cool, and at the same time, I’m trying to be stern and set my rules down for her benefit. Who knows? Maybe I’ll be using this in my future.”
Justin Theroux came to the party to show support for Lim and Leon; he said they’re old friends. Theroux is working on the TV series “Maniac,” but earlier this summer was featured in conversation with “Queer Eye” resident hairstylist and all-around character Jonathan Van Ness at New York Magazine’s Vulture Fest. The talk eventually became an episode on Van Ness’ podcast, “Getting Curious.”
“Jonathan is such a great interviewer because he’s a talker and he speaks at a rapid speed,” Theroux said. “He has such a colorful way of speaking. It didn’t feel like an interview, it felt like a conversation.”
After the second screening of “The Everything,” Lyonne hung out in the back of the theater to chat. Her friend, the comedian and “First Wives Club” star Michelle Buteau, spied her from the double doors and rushed over. They squealed in delight when they saw one another.
“B—h!” Michelle yelled while beckoning Thompson to come say hi. “If that wasn’t you, I was gonna be f–ked! This is my cousin, by the way, Zsela.”
“I’m not trying to be f–ked up, but my earrings are bigger than yours,” Lyonne said to Zsela, who cracked up in response. “That’s not a contest. I’m just letting you know, we’re both wearing silver hoops and mine are substantially larger. I’m not measuring d–ks, I’m just saying.”
“She’s also in the film,” Buteau said.
“All right,” Lyonne responded evenly. “Your earrings just became bigger than mine.”
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