Please take your seats, the show is about to begin. Or, well, that’s how it’s supposed to happen, but in Roger Vivier's Fall/Winter 2021 campaign film, something is amiss. Set in a nearly empty pink velvet venue, an audience — composed of Édith Piaf, Josephine Baker, Marilyn Monroe, Marlene Dietrich, and Grace Kelly lookalikes — sits for two hours awaiting the start of a fashion show. Alas, the production never begins. The show must go on, however, so the reborn stars — all wearing items from the label’s Fall/Winter 2021 collection — take to the stage and put on a performance of their own.
Entitled Do We Show, the recent campaign film from the legendary French house is equal parts a surrealist trip in a glamorous time machine and an aptly relevant nod to the COVID-19 pandemic. The 7-minute short film featuring reimagined silver screen stars acts as an homage to performers who were unable to work throughout the pandemic. In their honor, creative director Gherardo Felloni indulged viewers in a glamorous fantasy of a post-pandemic future that celebrates drama, theater, and elegance.
A symbolic representation of how life came to a sharp halt at the start of quarantine, the performances from the crew were all cut short. Piaf, who wore a chunky kitten heel with a metallic buckle, opened her mouth to sing, but all that escaped was a croak — stage fright consumed her and she couldn’t perform. Baker danced in a pearl-encrusted bootie with a feather trim only to be interrupted by Monroe in a bejeweled stiletto, which Roger Vivier is credited for popularizing. Meanwhile, the Kelly doppelgänger recited a monologue while carrying a feminine baby blue handbag decked out in pearls and gems, only to faint when Felloni made an appearance and told her the show won’t be in person: “We have restrictions so it’s going to be digital,” said the Italian-born designer — a nod to the many brands who showed virtually during Fashion Month.
In classic Roger Vivier fashion, the fall collection celebrated high-end glamor, but the recent series carried a greater purpose, as it echoed a larger sentiment. Just like Chanel’s Fall/Winter 2021 collection and the Simone Rocha x H&M collab that ignited fantasies of dressing up, Roger Vivier’s Do We Show allowed viewers to imagine the return of red carpet-worthy ensembles. “We have to continue to make people dream because it’s my job actually, in fashion. Basically, it’s our job now to try to find a way to escape,” said Felloni in an interview with WWD. In a time where in-person human connection is scarce, all you can do is dream of future gatherings and Felloni made it easy to do so with a whimsical film that promised sparkles, shine, and optimism in the future.
The show is available to watch in an IGTV on Roger Vivier’s Instagram account, @rogervivier, or on rogervivier.com. The Fall/Winter 2021 collection is not yet available for purchase, but it’s one to certainly keep an eye on, as it’s filled with many pieces you’ll want when restaurant and travel restrictions fully cease and you start to rebuild your going-out wardrobe. Standout selects from the line include the Covered Buckle Platform Boot — a sultry knee-high leather boot with a sky-high heel — and the Viv Choc Bag — a black leather handbag with a metallic buckle.