Following last week’s release of Ridley Scott’s House of Gucci, there has been buzz: Lady Gaga and Adam Driver were praised for their performances as Patrizia and Maurizio Gucci (as well as the intense sex scene that left many scarred after watching it with their parents at the movie theater).
On Monday, the heirs of Aldo Gucci (played by Al Pacino in the movie), who served as the Gucci company’s chairman from 1953 to 1986, issued a statement in response to the film.
“The production of the film did not bother to consult the heirs before describing Aldo Gucci — president of the company for 30 years — and the members of the Gucci family as thugs, ignorant and insensitive to the world around them,” the statement said. “This is extremely painful from a human point of view and an insult to the legacy on which the brand is built today.”
The statement went on to discuss Patrizia’s legacy as “even more objectionable” since she “is painted, not only in the film but also in the statements made by cast members, as a victim who was trying to survive in a masculine and macho corporate culture.” Witness the viral TikTok audio of Gaga’s voice overlaid on other shows and movies that feature female violence.
Scott doesn’t understand the outrage, though. He called the Gucci family’s response “alarmingly insulting” and reminded them that Al Pacino (who the family argued looked nothing like their tall, handsome Aldo) is, in fact, an elite actor — an Oscar winner. “How could they be better represented than by Al Pacino? Excuse me! You probably have the best actors in the world, you should be so fucking lucky,” Scott told Total Film Magazine.
Before the release of the Gucci-family statement, designer Tom Ford wrote about his experience viewing the film. (Played by Reeve Carney, Ford is featured briefly at the end.) Ford served as the creative director of the fashion house at the time of Maurizio’s murder and worked closely with him; he is described in the film as the designer who revamped the brand as Maurizio had desired.
In his statement, Ford wrote that he was “deeply sad for several days after watching House of Gucci,” which he believed was a reaction that only those who knew the real people and the real story would feel. “It was hard for me to see the humor and camp in something that was so bloody.”
He wrote, “I often laughed out loud, but was I supposed to?” and described some of the scenes featuring Jared Leto as Paolo Gucci, which seemed as though they could be from SNL. “Leto’s brilliance as an actor is literally buried under latex prosthetics,” wrote Ford. “Paolo, whom I met on several occasions, was indeed eccentric and did some wacky things, but his overall demeanor was certainly not like the crazed and seemingly mentally challenged character of Leto’s performance.”
Even though Ford and the Gucci family have publicly shared their opinions and grievances with the film, it will still be a hit. Amid the over-the-top portrayals, there are Gaga and Driver and stunning cinematography. And, in Ford’s own words, “splash the Gucci name across things and they usually sell.”