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Editor's pick film

Prada returns with sequel of The Postman Dreams short movie series

Elijah Wood in Prada's new The Postman Dreams 2 film series
Elijah Wood in Prada’s new The Postman Dreams 2 film series

Prada has released a second series of short movies written and directed by acclaimed filmmaker Autumn de Wilde for the holiday season.

The Postman Dreams 2, which hones in on the Prada Galleria bag, is a follow up to the series of the same name and Prada’s first project with de Wilde, which debuted in 2015. This time around it sees four humorous and whimsical films, the first two of which have already been released – The Bogey and The Troublemaker.

Hollywood actor Elijah Wood stars as the postman in each, but the real protagonist is indeed the bag, which features as a key plot-point in all of the creative work, as well as the thread that ties the four together.

In The Bogey, for instance, actress Emma Roberts plays herself being interrupted on set by the postman delivering her Galleria bag. The title is drawn from the Hollywood vernacular for an individual breaching the set and walking through a shot while the camera is rolling. Wood therefore is indeed the unwitting bogey on this occasion.

In the second, Wood is in pursuit of Sasha Frolova in order to give her the gift, resulting in a hot chase around a stadium to do so. Drawing on the screwball comedies of the 1930s, Prada refers to this as an absurdist cat-and-mouse game.

“These films are a fantasy to be indulged. A gift to be enjoyed,” reads the write-up, referring to de Wilde’s work as offering a touch of daydream and moments of pure surreal wit.

“De Wilde devises her own imaginary vistas and mise en scène, inspired not just by her own obsessions but those of others. Desire, pleasure, eventual satisfaction – these are the underlying themes of these non-sequential, fabulist chapters,” the team explains.

The last two episodes, which are coming soon, are called The Punch and The Elevator.

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film

Tory Burch nods to re-gifting in holiday campaign

Mindy Kaling in A Very Merry Mindy for Tory Burch
Mindy Kaling in A Very Merry Mindy for Tory Burch

Actress and comedian Mindy Kaling stars in Tory Burch’s holiday campaign this year, which focuses on the idea of re-gifting.

The tongue-in-cheek video, titled A Very Merry Mindy, sees a personalised giftbox arrive from Tory Burch herself just as Kaling worries about how she’s going to have time to get all her Christmas shopping done.

She proceeds to go through all the items inside, pondering which of them should go to which of her friends and family. A navy sweatshirt with “Peace” written on the front of it she suggests for her aunt, while a gold tote she thinks will do well for Beyoncé.

She decides to keep the Tory Burch Foundation Seed Box, which features seven products made by and benefitting women entrepreneurs, for herself.


Categories
Editor's pick film

Mulberry riffs on ‘12 days of Christmas’ for seasonal campaign

Mulberry's Three French Hens in its My True Love Gave To Me Christmas campaign
Mulberry’s Three French Hens for its My True Love Gave To Me Christmas campaign

Mulberry’s holiday campaign breathes new life into iconic Christmas carol, the ’12 days of Christmas’ this year, with a quirky and playful sing-a-long.

Directed by Charlotte Wales, the “My True Love Gave To Me” film focuses on taking poetic license in the visual expression of the 12 days. The “piper’s piping” for instance, turns to baking, while the “four calling birds” are models on their mobile phones.

“Mulberry is about embracing heritage and tradition, and then flipping it in an unexpected way,” says Mulberry creative director, Johnny Coca. “This time of year should be filled with love and laughter. We wanted to make people smile and leave them wanting to celebrate a very Mulberry Christmas.”

There are also all manner of Mulberry-references throughout the clips, naturally including its accessories and mainline collection.

The song itself is performed by Mercury Prize nominated band ‘The Big Moon’. It’s a fairly big step away from Mulberry’s 2016 campaign, which tugged at the heartstrings via an endearing story of love and acceptance played by child actors pretending to be grown-ups.

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film

River Island captures ‘change blindness’ in date night campaign

River Island
River Island

River Island’s latest campaign is a twist on popular British TV show, First Dates, designed to capture the reactions of unsuspecting men as their dates switch outfits.

Three female actresses were hired to go on the real dates (from a long term relationship to an actual first meet), but then gradually changed their looks throughout the course of the evening. The responses of their male company were secretly filmed.

“Do you notice the little things that change right before your eyes? Scientists have been studying ‘change blindness’ for decades, and we at River Island decided to throw on our lab coats and put the phenomenon to the test,” the write-up reads.

The campaign is accompanied by editorial helping shoppers find outfits to wear on a date, as well as a competition for them to win a trip to Paris and a £200 shopping spree in the River Island Style Studio.

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Editor's pick film

The Outnet releases six short comedy films starring the Foster sisters

The Foster sisters in The Outnet's #PrettyInfluential comedy series
The Foster sisters in The Outnet’s #PrettyInfluential comedy series

The Outnet has launched a six-part video series for New York Fashion Week offering an irreverent look at life as an “influencer”.

Starring Erin and Sara Foster, the sisters behind parody reality TV show Barely Famous, the #PrettyInfluential films are a tongue-in-cheek look at all the hyperbole that fashion week brings.

In the first two released so far, the comedy duo aim to get their street style photos taken, get a decent seat at one of the shows and gatecrash a fashion week party, all in a bid to get more followers. Up next is everything from hashtagging to freebies and #OOTD.

The films follow the concept behind Barely Famous, which is about the social media era and people’s obsession with fame. They also tap into an increasing trend for short form, serialised content from brands – cleverly inviting consumers back at a given time for the next episode. In this instance, each clip is between two and four minutes long and rolling out daily over NYFW.

Each of the looks worn by the sisters are of course stocked by The Outnet, for which there’s a curated shoppable list available.

Categories
business digital snippets e-commerce film mobile social media technology

What you missed: Women’s march, what Brexit means for fashion, Branson on retail’s survival

Signs from the Women's March on Washington. (Photographed by Jonno Rattman, via Vogue)
Signs from the Women’s March on Washington. (Photographed by Jonno Rattman, via Vogue)

Top of the news agenda this past week has of course been the US inauguration of President Donald Trump, and the subsequent Women’s Marches that took place around the world. Credit to some of the intelligent coverage coming out of traditionally “fashion” (not to mention “teen”) publications, above and beyond the mere commentary around what the new First Lady and First Daughter are wearing. A particular nod to Fashionista for deciding not to comment on the latter. Lots to read, support and get behind, and the fashion industry has the potential to be a big part of that in terms of equal rights for all.

Meanwhile, other big news to know about, includes a view on what UK prime minister, Theresa May’s Brexit speech means for fashion, as well as an inspirational keynote from Richard Branson at NRF Retail’s Big Show on entrepreneurialism in retail. Also check out our recent view on whether Twitter is still relevant for fashion brands, as well as below further insight on how the industry is using Whatsapp, what to expect from Pinterest, and yet more updates on the chatbot space.


TOP STORIES
  • The most inspiring moments from the speeches at the Women’s March on Washington [Vogue]
  • Decoding Theresa May’s Brexit speech and what it means for fashion [BoF]
  • Richard Branson: Retail brands must ‘be entrepreneurial’ to survive [Retail Dive]
  • Shoes of Prey and Indochino on mass customisation and the future of retail [NRF]

BUSINESS
  • Bitter end to American Apparel as wind down accelerates [WWD]
  • Fashion house BCBG closing stores, restructuring [Retail Dive]
  • Fashion brands fear Trump’s trade policies will disrupt global production chains, with risk of tariffs squeezing profits [SCMP]

SOCIAL MEDIA
  • How fashion brands are using Whatsapp [Glossy]
  • Instagram accounts for 92% of brand social interactions: report [Luxury Daily]
  • Here’s what marketers can expect from Pinterest in 2017 [AdWeek]
  • Is Twitter right for customer service? [L2]
  • Twitter is phasing out the “Buy” button, will continue to offer donations [TechCrunch]
  • Dolce & Gabbana innovates fashion show by casting social media stars as models [CPP-Luxury]

MARKETING
  • How influencer chatbots could close the gap between content and commerce [The Drum]
  • Alexa Chung’s latest campaign video for AG is very, very, very funny [Fashionista]
  • Burberry’s forthcoming mobile app designed to ‘build connection’ with consumers over commerce [The Drum]

RETAIL
  • Meeting millennials where they shop: Shaping the future of shopping malls [McKinsey]
  • Do digital brands need physical stores? [BoF]
  • Mall owners find relief from unlikely source: online retailers [WSJ]

TECHNOLOGY
  • Your clothes will be on the radio [Bloomberg]
  • How robots in stores could revolutionise the customer experience [Retail Dive]
  • Neiman Marcus launched voice-controlled wearables for associates [Apparel]
  • Amazon reportedly in search of creative chief for VR commerce plans [Retail Dive]
Categories
business Editor's pick

Man Repeller trolled Zappos’ customer service team, and it’s hilarious

zappos-personal-assistant-man-repeller-4_1024

If this isn’t the best ad for the customer service reps at online shoe retailer Zappos, then we don’t know what is.

Haley Nahman, a writer for fashion blog Man Repeller, decided to test out the company’s mandate that essentially says its team will answer any question you throw at them. And she did so in the most entertaining way possible.

First she started by asking questions related to fashion and which shoes she should wear. Straight-forward. Next, she adds in that she can’t quite find what she wants on Zappos and do they have any other suggestions – she kindly gets some Amazon links back (Zappos’ parent company), as well as some amusing details on the customer service reps name and fashion perspective.

From here on out, things start heading a little left field… from opinions on manicures, to a back-and-forth about cats vs dogs, and suggestions for artichoke dip recipes. “OMG. THIS TEAM WILL DO ANYTHING,” Nahman exclaims as she walks away with a delicious dish to try, noting simultaneously how her karma levels are slowly falling wayward.

Man Repeller writer Haley Nahman and her cat, Bug - as referenced in the Zappos customer service conversations
Man Repeller writer Haley Nahman and her cat, Bug – as referenced in the Zappos customer service conversations

On a scale of tasks related to being a Zappos rep, things only get wilder from there: Nahman heads into neediness territory, gets some killer Harry Potter quotes back (seriously), and brings in some heavy personal family matters that still manage to get the most considered of responses.

“Did I mention she thanked me for taking time out of my busy day to get in touch? I am a horrible person who doesn’t deserve nice things,” Nahman writes. “Zappos will indeed answer any question thrown at them, I no longer deserve my membership in the Former Customer Service Worker Club and I am spending my discretionary income at Zappos for the next ten years in a meager attempt at restitution for my wrongdoings.”

What a win for Zappos, who has of course based its entire business on the quality of its customer service team. “Seriously, the goodness of these people nearly drove me to poetry,” Nahman adds. Now there’s a testimony.

Categories
Editor's pick film

Mercedes-Benz proves a puppet assistant is the next big thing in fashion

MercedesBenz_petitmichel

It’s always good to see fashion not taking itself too seriously. This time, it’s the turn of Mercedes-Benz with the help of sound designer Michel Gaubert and his puppet assistant Petit Michel.

In an amusing short film – the latest in the automotive brand’s Fashion Creatives series – the relationship between the two characters is explored. Initially it’s about sabotage on the part of the puppet, and embarrassment for Gaubert, before it emerges that Petit Michel is in fact equally a genius on-hand to help Gaubert win some of his biggest gigs. For reference, those gigs span the fashion show soundtracks of Karl Lagerfeld, Chanel and Fendi, through to Raf Simons, Jonathan Anderson, Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Jeremy Scott and Celine.

As a reward, Petit Michel is off to Mercedes-Ben Fashion Week Berlin in Gaubert’s place. He also gets read a soppy poem and given a rocket badge. The duo cruise around in a Mercedes-Benz 1970 280SEL throughout.

The spot was written and directed by Los Angeles-based director Toben Seymour. The puppeteer for Petit Michel was Viktor Yerrid, who works for the Jim Henson Company and has performed Muppet characters in many TV shows, movies and TV commercials.

Image credit: Shelby Duncan

Categories
Blocks e-commerce social media

Harvey Nichols launches another risqué campaign, this time for recruitment

Divorce_settlement

Harvey Nichols is pushing a few buttons again – this time with a campaign that references divorce, natural disasters, stereotypical prison scenes and a number of sex toys.

The tongue-in-cheek series is in fact a recruitment drive for the retailer’s new store in Birmingham, UK. It invites potential employees to answer multiple-choice questions to test their suitability for the brand.

Fanatics Wanted, as it’s called, asks questions like: “What would you consider to be the biggest natural disaster, a meteor crashing into earth, a devastating flood or a monobrow?” Or: “What item in a divorce settlement would you fight for: the house, custody of the kids or that Roland Mouret dress that got you both those things in the first place?”

It was created by adam&eveDDB, and launches on June 6 via digital and social channels.

Harvey Nichols_ Biggest_Disaster

Which_is_more_fierce

Your_biggest_fear_in_prison

Your_biggest_turn_on

Categories
Editor's pick technology

Kmart’s Joe Boxer mocks wearables market with ‘inactivity tracker’

joeboxer_inactivitytracker

If there’s one thing the past 12 months has seen, it’s brands at the dozen jumping on the wearables bandwagon with some kind of gratuitous marketing tie up or another. Here comes another, but this time quite a winning one.

In a bid to promote its pyjamas, Kmart’s Joe Boxer line has teamed up with FCB Chicago to come up with the idea of the “inactivity tracker”. Yep, forget counting your steps like every other fitness band out there, and instead get comfortable with doing absolutely nothing at all. The hashtag #chillhard is attached accordingly.

“The whole idea is to turn the tracking trend on its ear. It plays off of Joe Boxer’s irreverent brand personality really well,” Jamie Stein, a spokeswoman for Kmart, told AdAge.

The device, which was genuinely available to consumers (in limited edition and for free to the first 50 who purchased from Kmart’s New York Astor Place store this weekend), connects to a mobile app available on both iOS and Android. From there it rewards the wearer’s laziness and chill time.

joeboxer_tracker

As per the promotional material, the step-by-step process is to: 1. Put on Joe Boxer pajamas and your Inactivity Tracker; 2. Download the app. Pair Inactivity Tracker with your smartphone. Earn badges; 3. No more steps.

Levels can be reached including “Human Sloth”, “Genghis Yawn”, “Are you dead?” “Couch Commander”, “Cryogenic” and “You Rock!” To achieve the latter, one needs less than 2,500 steps in five days; perhaps not the most responsible of suggestions to today’s population, but a fun mockery of the route wearable tech has taken us so far otherwise. The product description similarly highlights things like “little itsy bitsy lights” and “cool vibrating thing”.

Accompanying the launch of the device is a 60-minute video of two men competing in the “2015 Joe Boxer Lounger Games”. Amusing commentary ensues as it focuses on the PJ-clad individuals chilling in their armchairs.