PARIS — Yes, she arched her back and lifted her famous derriere to the heavens. And with her legs kicked out so effortlessly, there’s no mistaking she’s a dancer.
But Jennifer Lopez, the star of Louis Vuitton’s fall advertising, is every inch the fierce fashion model in the campaign, which breaks in August magazines and will soon wrap the Vuitton store under construction on Fifth Avenue at 57th Street in New York.
Hair slicked back, eyes painted dramatically to accentuate a feline look, Lopez positively smolders in the images, often posing astride or on top of shirtless hunks for the lenses of photographers Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott.
“I think she looks incredibly beautiful and sophisticated,” Marc Jacobs, Vuitton’s creative director, said during an exclusive preview of the images. “After her hair and makeup, she just became that supermodel. It was an immediate switch into the role she was cast for.”
Jacobs said he hasn’t spoken to Lopez directly since the shoot, but he was told she was also pleased with her transformation.
For Jacobs, the campaign represents the intersection of two icons from different cultural realms, and his mind is tickled by all the associations. To wit: he describes the close-up photo of Lopez clutching a diamond-studded logo bracelet as “that ‘bling’ photograph.”
But it’s also about moving the merch, and the $37,000 bracelet announces that the French luxury group is getting serious about fine jewelry. Jacobs disclosed that Vuitton recently enlarged its creative teams in the watch and jewelry areas, foreshadowing a full-blown launch.
Lopez also helps pitch Jacobs’ blockbuster collaboration on accessories with Japanese artist Takashi Murakami. Several images show her clutching the black-backed multicolor monogram, arriving at Vuitton boutiques for fall retailing.
The budget for the campaign was not disclosed, but Merrill Lynch in Paris estimates Louis Vuitton spends about $208 million annually on advertising, or about 6 percent of sales. Dollar figures are converted from the euro at current exchange.