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Yoox commemorates 15 years with Italian cinema project

June 15, 2015

Amarcord poster Amarcord poster


Online retailer Yoox is giving back to Italian cinema for its 15th anniversary, sponsoring the restoration of the award-winning film “Amarcord.”

Yoox worked with the Cineteca di Bologna L’Immagine Ritrovata’s laboratory to bring the Federico Fellini film back to its prime. This particular project enables Yoox to showcase its Italian heritage and give back to its local culture in a lasting way.

"Yoox, having successfully made its foray into the movie industry by producing Alison Chernick’s 'The Artist Is Absent,' a documentary of the fashion designer Martin Margiela, is now once again partnering with the Italian film institution Cineteca di Bologna to restore Federico Fellini’s legendary movie 'Amarcord,'" said Rebecca Miller, CEO of Miller & Company, New York.

"This sponsorship of the restoration is in celebration of its 15th anniversary," she said. "This collaboration celebrates the best of many comparable facets between the two brands.

"Ralph Lauren, an iconic American brand chose to restore the Star-Spangled Flag, Diego Della Valle chose to restore the Coliseum in Rome, Fendi, the restoration of The Trevi Fountain and the Four Fountains in Rome. Loro Piana rescued and rebuilt the Vicuna industry. These brands have aligned themselves with iconic essentials that act as an extension of their brand’s passions in the hearts and minds of their consumers."

"They both identified market gaps by looking at two very distant worlds, by drawing them together to express ideas and initiatives using relevant industry communication vehicles."

Ms. Miller is not affiliated with Yoox, but agreed to comment as an industry expert.

Yoox was unable to comment directly before press deadline.

Inside look
Yoox introduced the project to consumers via social media, directing them to a dedicated page of its Web site to learn more. Here, they can watch a film detailing the work that went into restoring the film.

The film begins by setting the scene and explaining what the cineteca is, showing the viewer some of the 70,000 films stored in the facility and the accompanying memorabilia displayed, including 200,000 posters.

After establishing the foundation, the laboratory director takes the viewer through the restoration process. First, when the lab receives a film, they physically restore it, repairing any damage and removing dirt.

Yoox Amarcord video still

Video still

Next, they send it through a scanner that creates a file, and each singular frame is then cleaned up digitally, taking out spots and lines and stabilizing movement. Once the sound has also been cleaned following a similar technique, the film is published as both a projection-ready DCP file and onto 35 millimeter film for storing.

Showing the full process behind the restoration gives consumers a better understanding of why such efforts are needed, giving more weight to Yoox's support of the initiative.

The video also delves into the importance of the film being restored by Yoox.

Amarcord is a comedy-drama about a boy growing up in a small town in Fascist Italy, a semi-autobiographical tale about Mr. Fellini’s own coming of age. The film won an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, the director’s last Oscar, and was nominated in two additional categories for its director and screenplay.

In the social video, the director of Fondazione Cineteca di Bologna says he believes Amarcord says a lot about Italy to a global viewership. He also explains that once you meet the characters, they remain with you.

Amarcord by Federico Fellini: participates in the restoration of the Oscar-winning film

"Fellini’s Amarcord is a semi-autobiographical coming of age story told by a director who was not afraid to confront the absurdity of Mussolini’s government, was a leader in exposing sexuality and told his story through a group of bizarre unforgettable characters," Ms. Miller said.

"Yoox was launched in much the same fashion/lens as this Fellini movie by looking at two very distant worlds and drawing them together creating a dream," she said. "The selection of Amarcord sends an implicit communication about the similarities of the brand’s reference to their heritage and histories."

Further down the page, Yoox shares a slideshow of black-and-white images from the making of the film, showing Mr. Fellini behind his camera or sitting in his director’s chair calling the shots.

Yoox Amarcord site

Screenshot of Yoox Web site

Yoox has also captured the spirit and style of the film in ecommerce edits for both men and women.

For women, this selection includes Fendi handbags, skirts by Marni and brooches by Emilio Pucci and Nina Ricci. Menswear includes Brunello Cucinelli suiting and Prada shoes.

Pet project
Luxury companies frequently sponsor film restorations as a way to give back to culture and the arts.

Italian fashion label Gucci has stayed true to its commitment to the arts, working with Martin Scorsese’s The Film Foundation for the past 10 years, and the brand recently celebrated this important milestone with the release of its latest project at the 68th Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France.

The Film Foundation is dedicated to preserving and restoring historically, artistically and culturally significant films so that future generations will have the opportunity to enjoy them. Gucci’s long-term collaboration with the foundation highlights the brand’s social responsibility, which is increasingly appealing to consumers who have begun to focus more on making ethical and moral purchases (see story).

Also, French conglomerate LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton gained exposure among attendees at a previous Cannes Film Festival by funding the digitalization and restoration of “The Umbrellas of Cherbourg.”

The restored version of French filmmaker Jacques Demy’s 1964 musical will be shown during the “Cannes Classics” series at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival May 15-26. LVMH looked to raise awareness for its support of the heritage of its brands by funding the restoration project, per the conglomerate (see story).

"Celebrating milestones are important to any business as an indicator of measurement, value and success," Ms. Miller said. "For Fellini, a milestone was the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film for Amacord. For Yoox, it was Federico Marchetti’s orthodox method of having a dream, creating a vision that allowed others to dream with him, mapping out a plan, not being fazed by the challenges that surrounded him and giving birth to a new sales and marketing venue through an on-line store selling last seasons garments and over runs without causing damage to the brand’s image.

"There have been significant rewards for those people and brands that are able to secure a first mover position in business," she said. "A young luxury brand often seeks a more established brand or entity with which to align.

"The rationale is simple. Alignment of this nature affords a younger brand instant exposure to an established brands’ client base, reputation, heritage, marketing efforts and potential share of wallet. In this scenario it also creates a cultural bond speaking about the Italian way of life."

Final Take
Sarah Jones, staff reporter on Luxury Daily, New York