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ARTICLE SARAH CRISTOBAL

PHOTOGRAPHY MERRICK MORTON

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SUMMER OF BLING

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SUMMER OF BLING

PHOTOGRAPHY MERRICK MORTON
TEXT SARAH CRISTOBAL



Director Sofia Coppola, who is brilliant at capturing young adult angst on film, has created one of the must-see movies of the Facebook generation. The Bling Ring is Mean Girls meets Bonnie and Clyde, a stylized retelling of the true story of a wily gang of teenagers who are so desperate to emulate the lives of the celebrities they follow in the tabloids that they burgle their Hollywood homes—and get away with it for almost a year—eventually amassing over $3 million in stolen assets. The robberies took place from 2008–09, at the height of fashion’s label mania. Coppola tapped friend and costume designer Stacey Battat to outfit the fantastic cast—Katie Chang, Isreal Broussard, Emma Waston, Taissa Farmiga, Claire Julien, and Leslie Mann (who pulls off a brilliant portrayal of the Secret–obsessed mother of Watson’s character). Battat says that once she signed on it was easy to find inspiration in Los Angeles. “I did a lot of market research at Kitson,” she admits. “I learned about a label called Wildfox! And that scene when they go into the store and shop like crazy took place there.” Battat, who has several notable credits on her CV, including Zoe Cassavetes’s Broken English, the pilot episode of Girls, and Coppola’s Somewhere, favored labels like Herve Leger, Rick Owens, Chanel, and Marc Jacobs to lend an authentic feel to the looks. “We tried to re-create the hits of the last five to ten years,” she says. “And there was of course the desire to have a lot of it.” 

Battat also had the joy of dressing the celebrities who were willing to make cameos in the film. The most notorious of the bunch was Paris Hilton, whose house was a repeated target of the Bling Ring crew—they robbed it at least five times, and were prone to partying in the heiress’s VIP room. “That was incredible,” says Battat of Hilton’s manse. “We weren’t technically allowed to shoot there, because she lives in a gated community. We had to sneak in with a minimal crew, load all the stuff into a normal car, no trucks or anything. It was fun to camp out at Paris’s house. Every nook and cranny is incredible. She had a walk-in shoe closet that was arranged by color.”

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SOHN STEPS INTO THE SPOTLIGHT HBD TINA TURNER THE VIDEO: #THATPOWER BY WILL.I.AM FEAT JUSTIN BIEBER BEST VIDEOS: FRANK OCEAN
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