Perennial model-in-the-spotlight Crystal Renn stars in Chanel's newest campaign for the reopening of the brand's SoHo store, and we got her reaction to the campaign just minutes after she had seen it herself.
"I'm absolutely freaking out," she told us. "Working with Chanel has been my dream forever. As long as I've been working as a model I've been thinking about Chanel and working towards Chanel and this campaign is the proudest moment of my life."
While Renn's most recent campaigns (including that notorious retouched shoot for nonprofit Passion For Fashion) have brought attention to the so-called "plus size" model's shifting body size, her latest print work for Chanel focuses on the model's gorgeous face while a sultry Baptiste Giabiconi reclines topless in the background.
Renn believes her latest coup speaks to positive changes in the industry. "I think the fashion industry is changing and is more open to a new ideal," says Renn. "It's about a personality and a moment captured..it's not about body size it's about talent and effort...I hope the industry sees this [campaign] as an example of that."
As for that retouching scandal that landed her on the Today show? "Retouching happens," says Renn. "It's happened to other actresses and models and a lot of times models won't come forward and they're even relieved to be retouched. Don't get me wrong, I love retouching but I"m very proud of my body and to portray me as a size zero or a two when I'm a ten, that's inaccurate and I was concerned with how people who look up to me would see those ads."
But she's moved on. This is the second time Renn has worked with Lagerfeld (she walked in his 2011 resort show in Saint Tropez), and she sees no reason why the partnership won't continue.
"Karl is a genius," Renn says. "He's a Virgo so we're compatible and we got on really well."
For the campaign, which was shot in a studio in Paris a few months ago, Lagerfeld asked Renn and Giabiconi to envision themselves as lovers in a glamorous movie. "He said, 'You're not a model right now, you're an actress,'...the only difference between modeling and acting is that models have one second to tell a story and actresses have two hours."
And acting as if Giabiconi was her lover was, shockingly, not so hard to do. "He is the most gorgeous man I've ever seen hands down," Renn gushes. "I remember being on set and trying not to stare but staring at him methodically nonetheless to try to figure out how perfection in a male looks. It's insane when you look at him. "
So, we had to ask, is the next step for Renn acting?
"I haven't been actively seeking acting roles but if the right opportunity came up, absolutely," says Renn. The right part for Renn would be something dark and intense and challenging--no RoCo's for this chick. We'd shell out $12 to see her on the big screen.