It's not very often you hear of the golden girl of the Oscars, Meryl Streep being involved in an Academy Awards storm. But the nominee's choice of gown has just been brought into a row with none other than Karl Lagerfeld.
According to a WWD interview with the creative director behind Chanel, Lagerfeld said that after asking for the French house to modify one of its couture gowns, so she could wear it to the awards ceremony this weekend, Meryl changed her mind.
"I made a sketch and we started to make the dress," Lagerfeld told WWD. However, while work was underway on the dress, Chanel received a message reading: "Don't continue the dress. We found someone who will pay us."
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Lagerfeld continued: "After we gift her a dress that’s 100,000 euros, we found later we had to pay her to wear it. We gave them dresses, we make the dresses, but we don’t pay." His final words on the matter? "A genius actress, but cheapness also, no?"
Meryl's representatives stepped in to deny the claims, telling The Hollywood Reporter, that the statement 'is absolutely false, and that it is against her personal ethics to be paid to wear a gown on the red carpet.'
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In case the actress has a change of heart - I mean, it happened to Anne Hathaway on her crowning night - the dress is still her's. "She could keep the dress because of the size. It's couture, it's perfect for her," Lagerfeld said.
Designers paying actresses to wear dresses at high profile events such as the Oscars is very common place but it turns out Chanel is not for sale.
Meryl Streep's stylist, Micaela Erlanger, has since released a statement. “As a stylist working with a nominee for any major event, it’s industry standard for designers to propose gown ideas and sketches — some custom, some not depending on the occasion. In the case of Chanel’s submission, which was presented with full knowledge that Ms. Streep and I — her stylist — were having conversations with various brands, we were shown sketches of a dress from their most recent couture collection. Although [it was] an exquisite gown from the existing collection, we decided to go in a different direction, with another designer."
Micaela added, “At no point were there any conversations regarding monetary compensation. Nor were any other brands considered based on their willingness to pay for placement. This is not how my company operates and is very much a practice in conflict with Ms. Streep‘s personal ethics. Any reports or quotes stating otherwise are a complete fabrication.”
Chanel followed up by releasing their own statement.
“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.”