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David O. Russell Gets Surreal With Prada

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David O. Russell Gets Surreal With Prada

The Italian house continues to merge fashion and film with Past Forward

BY ARIA DARCELLA

CULTURE  -  NOVEMBER 17

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Paula Patton, Allison Williams, and John Krasinski in Past Forward

Photo: Courtesy of Prada

The fashion world has been veering into film for quite some time now, but Miuccia Prada is without question one of the designers who goes above and beyond when it comes to movie magic. After a premier in L.A. earlier this week and global screenings last night, Prada’s collaboration with writer/director David O. Russell, Past Forward, is finally available for all to see.

The silent film (which stars Allison Williams, Freida Pinto, Kuoth Wiel, Sinqua Walls, John Krasinski, Connie Britton, and Sacha Baron Cohen, among others), sees three women living out the same moments. Scenes repeat, confusing what is real and what is a dream. Russell draws from Hitchcock, and even throws in visual cues from art, such as a nod to Magritte's "The Lovers".

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Jack Huston and Freida Pinto in Past Forward

Photo: Courtesy of Prada

Russell and Prada first discussed the idea over dinner, when the designer recalled a conversation she had with an artist who believed that in the future, people would be able to experience all media, all at once, which got Russell and Prada to discussing time, memories, experiences, and more. “This led to thinking about this project, and what could be created or expressed: A series of raw ideas. What cinema is, what memory is, what life is, what dreams are—these are all related,” Russell explained of the film, clips from which were used as the backdrop for Prada’s Spring 2017 runway show. He later added, “Here was the opportunity to make a journey of cinema guided by layers of movie memories, life images and emotions, with no aim except to create art—as if it were a painting or a sculpture— free from normal narrative or audience expectations. The cast and I worked simply for the joy of making art.”

Miuccia Prada has long been at the forefront of pushing creative outlets in regards to promoting fashion (overtly or not). Her other line, Miu Miu, has an ongoing short film series, “Women’s Tales,” which features movies directed by women that explore the female experience. Miranda July’s installment, Somebody, even spawned an app.

Meanwhile, Prada has an ongoing literary contest, Prada Journal, in which writers submit entries based on a theme, competing for a cash prize. While the winning stories are published, this year’s competition also saw the four finalists’ work turned into plays, which are available online.

Prada’s latest project with Russell is no different—the film was designed to also be shown in galleries, in fragments, and on Instagram stories. You can watch the film now in its entirety on prada.com

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