On last night’s Oscars red carpet, Florence Foster Jenkins leading lady Meryl Streep did not wear Chanel. She wore a dark blue, beaded, off-the-shoulder Elie Saab Haute Couture gown. As is her style, Streep wore pants underneath. And no, Elie Saab did not pay the actress to wear its designs.
On Thursday, fashion baron Karl Lagerfeld impugned the legendary actress’ honor by suggesting such. He claimed that Streep, after requesting a custom Chanel dress for the Oscars, backed out once another label (ostensibly Saab) offered to pay her to wear one of their dresses on the red carpet. “A genius actress, but cheapness also, no?” were the Fendi frontman’s exact words.
Streep’s camp was not pleased. A representative for the actress issued a statement to The Hollywood Reporter, affirming that it would be against Streep’s ethics to accept payment for wearing a dress.
The house of Chanel proceeded to apologize-but-not-apologize for it’s creative director’s harsh words: “Chanel engaged in conversations with Ms. Streep’s stylist to design a dress for her to wear to the Academy Awards, with the full understanding that she was considering options from other design houses. When informed by the stylist that Ms. Streep had chosen a dress by another designer there was no mention of the reason. Chanel wishes to express our continued and deep respect for Ms. Streep,” wrote the brand in a statement.
Streep, understandably ruffled by all the unnecessary and ill-founded conjecture, took to People to voice her frustration. “In reference to Mr. Lagerfeld’s ‘statement,’ there is no ‘controversy’: Karl Lagerfeld, a prominent designer, defamed me, my stylist, and the illustrious designer whose dress I chose to wear, in an important industry publication. That publication printed this defamation, unchecked. Subsequently, the story was picked up globally, and continues, globally, to overwhelm my appearance at the Oscars, on the occasion of my record breaking 20th nomination, and to eclipse this honor in the eyes of the media, my colleagues and the audience,” wrote the decorated actress, continuing. “I do not take this lightly, and Mr. Lagerfeld’s generic ‘statement’ of regret for this ‘controversy’ was not an apology. He lied, they printed the lie, and I am still waiting.”
Streep did not have to wait long for said apology. “Chanel engaged in conversations with Ms. Streep’s stylist, on her request, to design a dress for her to wear to the Academy Awards. After an informal conversation, I misunderstood that Ms. Streep may have chosen another designer due to remuneration, which Ms. Streep’s team has confirmed is not the case. I regret this controversy and wish Ms. Streep well with her 20th Academy Award nomination,” wrote Karl Lagerfeld in a statement. Maybe, just maybe, this’ll teach the designer to think twice before he spouts another of his oft-quoted Lagerfeld-isms.
[ via the Cut ]