Condé Nast's in-house branded content studio, 23 Stories, released its first major fashion project on Monday: a four-part video series produced in partnership with (paid for by) Gucci. The digital film was directed by Gia Coppola and stars Lou Doillon, Marcel Castenmiller, Laura Love and many more beautiful models, all decked out in Gucci's pre-fall collection and accessories on sale now. "This is the most creatively ambitious branded project we’ve embarked on to date,” said Condé Nast CEO Bob Sauerberg in a statement. The film series is now available to watch on Vogue, Vanity Fair, GQ, The New Yorker, W and Pitchfork's websites, as well as through international Condé Nast brands and on Gucci.com.
Alessandro Michele's charming, elaborate designs certainly lend themselves to visual storytelling, and the video series draws on the past much in the same way the Gucci creative director incorporates vintage inspiration into collections. Entitled "The Legend of Orpheus and Eurydice," the story conceived by Dirk Standen and Hamish Anderson retells the tragic Greek myth in modern day New York. After getting married in a custom pink 10-foot wedding veil designed by Michele for the project, Doillon's Eurydice is killed by a viper, played in human form by Love in red cape and black gloves. Castenmiller's Orpheus journeys to the underworld, also known as a basement nightclub, to rescue Doillon. But he is given one condition: he can't look back at his wife as they re-enter the bright and sunny city, or he'll lose her forever.
The atmospheric film, supported by original music from Devonté Hynes, feels like a beautiful and cinematic magazine editorial. Costume designer Arianne Phillips styled the project and the focus is, above all, squarely on the Gucci pre-fall collection. The camera lingers on shots of shoes, bags, embroidery details, clasped hands loaded up with rings and many more of the signature details of Michele's designs. But will "The Legend of Orpheus and Eurydice" actually drive sales? If we start seeing similar branded content popping up on Condé sites in the coming seasons, we'll take that as a yes.