PARIS — Marc Jacobs is fast becoming a savvy casting director — thanks to Louis Vuitton’s new penchant for celebrity advertising.
Confirming a WWD report April 21, Jacobs said Friday the upcoming fall-winter campaign features a cast of five young actors: Scarlett Johansson, Chloë Sevigny, Christina Ricci, Diane Kruger and Hayden Christensen.
Not that he shouted “Action!” much on set.
That’s because he directed the stars to assume a “lazy, louche and loungy” posture for their individual portraits — which will run as single pages and spreads in magazines starting with August issues.
“There’s definitely a Hollywood film-still aspect to [the pictures], but they’re not at all nostalgic in any way,” Jacobs said in an exclusive interview. “Each one was very glossed up, glamorized and Vuitton-ized.”
The photographs, by Vuitton regulars Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott, are still being retouched and won’t be ready for a couple of weeks. But Jacobs, who spent four days in a London studio supervising the shoot, said the campaign would have the “iconic” quality sought by the world’s biggest luxury brand.
“It all looks very opulent in a very young way,” he said. “There’s this beautiful, old, relaxed glamour to the whole thing.”
Vuitton plunged into the celebrity realm last year when it cast Jennifer Lopez — with spectacular reaction. Jacobs said Bernard Arnault, chairman of LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, loves the idea of featuring celebrities, as they’re very “attention-getting” — and have the potential to boost business.
Jacobs said he was fortunate the five were able to participate, with Johansson interrupting filming of Paul Weitz’s upcoming “Synergy” to take part. “She was just a hoot — totally up for it, vampy and glamorous,” Jacobs said.
One of the most dramatic moments of the shoot came afterward, when Ricci agreed to do additional poses for campaign stylist Katie Grand, who is also editor in chief of Pop magazine and will feature Ricci in an upcoming issue. For that shoot, Ricci played three different characters, and for a “Dangerous Liaisons” type, suddenly burst into tears, smearing her makeup dramatically.
“They were all such good models, we almost forgot these people are actors,” Jacobs said. “[Ricci] put on this performance, which was just so compelling.”
The campaign features many categories of Vuitton products, although Jacobs noted a preponderance of eveningwear, in line with his collection’s focus on fancy dresses with Scottish airs.
The budget for the campaign was not disclosed, however, analysts estimate Vuitton spends more than $200 million annually on advertising, or about 6 percent of sales.