Jalil Lespert: I respect Pierre Bergé

Pierre Bergé

Jalil Lespert would never have made his Yves Saint Laurent movie without Pierre Bergé’s consent.

Pierre was the business and life partner of the late designer and owns the rights to his work. He is famous for being open about his opinions, and often disagrees with those who work at the designer’s eponymous label.

Two movies about the late star’s life have been made recently, with Pierre approving of Jalil’s unreservedly.

“I wouldn’t have made the film without Pierre’s consent – not because of the important figure he is, but because he was his lifelong companion,” Jalil said during press for the film, according to fashionista.com.

“When it comes to Saint Laurent’s life, Pierre Bergé is an integral part of it – you can’t portray the former without portraying the latter. I needed to feel Pierre was by my side and access specific information only he could give me.”

Pierre famously disliked it when Tom Ford and Stefano Pilati worked at the fashion house, but is backing new designer Hedi Slimane all the way. Similarly he is happy with Jalil’s work, but was furious about another movie about the late star, called Saint Laurent and directed by Bertrand Bonello. He previously said that should that release show sketches or designs by Yves Saint Laurent, he would sue.

It was Jalil who reached out to Pierre first, asking for a meeting with him. They spoke for around 20 minutes and the moviemaker explained his picture would be about someone who was fighting for his dreams, after which Pierre backed him all the way. In line with that, he opened the archives for the film, so all the clothes seen are the real deal. It meant the team had access to 5,000 dresses, 15,000 accessories and 35,000 sketches

“I was thinking like, what the f**k, it’s just a freaking dress, I didn’t expect to be really touched and moved by a dress, but that happened during the shooting,” Pierre Niney, who plays the designer in the film, admitted.

Marie de Villepin stars as the designer’s muse Betty Catroux and was thrilled to have the chance to wear such iconic pieces – but they didn’t come without problems.

“No one could sweat in the dresses, and it basically meant no moving,” she said at a screening hosted by The Weinstein Company and Yves Saint Laurent Couture Palette this week. “I’m complaining now, but how amazing is it to get to wear those museum pieces that got pulled out for the first time ever just to be in this movie?”

As well as detailing the fashion, the movie looks at the troubles the designer faced, including depression and addiction.

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