Vanity Fair has a bunch of pretty pictures featuring the stars and costumes from Madonna’s upcoming directorial debut, W.E., about the lives of Edward VIII and Wallis Simpson.
James D’Arcy and Andrea Riseborough as the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, photographed at West Wycombe House, Buckinghamshire, England.
“For her feature-length directorial debut, W.E., Madonna has drilled into the obsessively stylish saga of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, whose romance rocked the British Empire and shocked the world. Naturally, as Krista Smith reports—and photographer Tom Munro confirms—the costumes had to be couture-perfect.”
D’Arcy wears clothing designed by Arianne Phillips
in collaboration with Dunhill; ring by Cartier.
Riseborough and D’Arcy in two of the period costumes
for the Windsors designed by Arianne Phillips.
“It was easy to get swept up in the historical relevance and epic romance of Wallis Simpson and Edward VIII,” Madonna says. “The fact that they were also the fashion icons of their day added to their allure for me. Wallis was the epitome of style and grace, and Andrea Riseborough captured this and so much more.”
D’Arcy and Riseborough at West Wycombe House.
“The fashions, modeled here by Riseborough and D’Arcy, were the special domain of Madonna’s longtime collaborator Arianne Phillips. The Oscar-nominated costume designer worked with such labels as Cartier, Dior, and Dunhill for the 60 or so wardrobe changes in the film. “Wallis and the Duke both made a lifestyle out of presentation. . . . It was a beautiful façade,” says Phillips. “He said that because she never got a title he gave her jewelry to make her feel royal.”
D’Arcy wears clothing designed by Arianne Phillips in collaboration with Dunhill.
Andrea Riseborough as Wallis Simpson and James D’Arcy as King Edward VIII, photographed at West Wycombe House, Buckinghamshire, England.
Riseborough wears clothing by Christian Dior for the film; jewelry by Cartier for the film.
Riseborough wears a headpiece by Stephen Jones Millinery for the film; earrings and brooch by Alexis Bittar for the film.
We don’t hold out a lot of hope for this film. Madonna has never really managed much in the way of success outside her pop ambitions and we suspect the final product here will be all surface; beautiful clothes and interiors, but little in the way of emotion or storytelling. We had to laugh when we saw the pictures because while Wallis and Edward were in some ways a striking couple, they were nowhere near as good-looking or glamorous as these two. Because Madonna’s in charge, it’s not surprising that the clothes are stunning and impeccable. We’d quibble with some of the historical accuracy because some of these look like modern reinterpretations of ’30s clothes rather than recreations of ’30s clothes; like a Marc Jacobs version of the ’30s. The blue and white striped dress and the chevron suit are gorgeous, though.
[Photo Credit: Tom Munro for vanityfair.com]