Taken from the Winter Issue of Wonderland.
Prada Past Forward
A film for Prada by David O. Russell.
MIUCCIA PRADA, THE DESIGNER famed for her investigative feminist works has just revealed Past Forward — a quixotic new multi-faceted film project directed by the mastermind of all things wondrous, (Joy, American Hustle, and Silver Linings Playbook, you name it, he’s probably done it) David O. Russell. Previous brand filmic-collaborations have included the whimsical workings of Wes Anderson, who’s French-themed series featured the incandescent Lea Seydoux, starring as the label’s ingenue to promote their perfume Candy as well as the quintessentially Italian delight Castello Cavalcanti, starring Jason Schwartzman.
Past Forward has been imagined as a surreal and silent dreamscape, where the actors feature in a unreliable narrative, constantly shifting combinations in replaying scenes. The result is disorientating, complex and gripping; contrasting the logic of convention, Russell purposefully leaves the viewer to decode what is seemingly elements of a beguiling black and white collage. The director pushes us to question our meaning of experience, memory, and dream; and thus to distinguish our ontological differences between them.
“Miuccia Prada challenged me to make a work of cinema, like a dream, fuelled by strange mystery, suspense, fear, danger, beauty, conflict, romance, love, identity, and time,” Russell explains. “Here was the opportunity to make a journey guided by layers of movie memories, life images and emotions, with no aim except to create art — as if it were a painting or a sculpture — free from normal narrative or audience expectations. The cast and I worked simply for the joy of making art.”
A stellar crew of actors feature in the short: Allison Williams, Freida Pinto, Kuoth Weil, John Krasinski, Jack Huston, Sinqua Walls, Paula Patton, Connie Brittan, and Sacha Baron Cohen. You may have already seen some of their faces at the set of the Prada SS17 fashion presentation this past month, where fragments of the film were integrated into the set.
Past Forward has been specifically designed to play in multiple media spaces: the cinema, social media, the gallery, and online. You can catch the first glimpse of the film at the new Hauser Wirth Schimmel Gallery in Los Angeles 15 November, where Prada will be initially showcasing it. Can’t quite afford trip to La-la Land, even if it is for Prada? You can catch Past Forward at prada.com as of 17 November. Be prepared to hit repeat and revel in the gorgeously cryptic tale.