A 24-minute behind-the-scenes video of Karl Lagerfeld’s shoot of the 2011 Pirelli calendar, in which models portray ancient Greek and Roman gods, may be one of the most fascinating pieces of fashion film footage we’ve seen. Highlights include:
1. Expansive views of Karl’s Paris studio, the walls of which are filled with so many books that it hurts the brain to imagine what he’d have to do if he ever found a bedbug.
2. Abbey Lee Kershaw speaking about Karl, especially when she calls him “the Einstein of high fashion.”
3. Daria Werbowy pontificating about models. “We’re kind of unearthly human beings,” she says. No shit.
4. Julianne Moore posing as the only non-model on the shoot. Karl says he never expected her to do it, but then she explains that basically she couldn’t say no to the ultimate validation of her hotness.
5. The nudity in this year’s calendar, which feels artistic rather than raunchy and gratuitous as it has in years past. Karl seems to be celebrating the strength and beauty of the naked or nearly naked human body, a striking departure from Terry Richardson’s shoot, where he had the girls get naked in the forest and hug sloths.
6. Karl discussing retouching. He decides Erin Wasson’s shots are so good they don’t need retouching.
7. What models do when their shoot is done. Have you ever wondered if a model who is naked on set bothers covering up when she’s done and goes to look at her shots with the photographer or just stays naked because she has nothing to hide? See in the video.