ZFF 2022 Opening Night

Every fall, the Zurich Film Festival takes place and provides a platform for the most promising filmmakers from around the globe. It aims to promote exchange between emerging directors, successful film workers, the film industry and the general public by showing the year’s greatest discoveries and most anticipated films.

Wearing a black Monique Lhuillier gown and Christian Louboutin shoes and bag.

I attended the opening night of the 18th Zurich Film Festival that kicked off at Zurich Convention Center with the European premiere of the inspirational Netflix production THE SWIMMERS. The film was presented personally by director Sally El Hosaini and actor Matthias Schweighöfer. The President of the Swiss Confederation Ignazio Cassis, who had just returned from NYC, emphasized the unifying effect of cinema on people and set the mood for the 11 festival days with his speech.

The cast of THE SWIMMERS as well as the real Yusra Martini on stage at the opening night.

I can absolutely recommend watching this amazing movie that tells the true story of sisters Yusra and Sarah Mardini, both talented swimmers, who were forced to flee the civil war sweeping their native Syria in 2015. They make the dangerous crossing to Europe in a refugee boat. When the engine fails on the open sea, they use ropes to pull the boat behind them for hours, saving numerous lives. Once in Germany, they met a swimming teacher (played by Matthias Schweighöfer) who trained them for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.

«It is not just an inspirational film that reinforces our belief in the good of people,» explained Artistic Director Christian Jungen in his speech, «With war once again raging in Europe, it is also an extremely important film of our time, because it throws a spotlight on the plight of refugees. Cinema is the medium of empathy that allows us to view the world through the eyes of others.»

The Zurich Film Festival runs until October 2, showing 146 films, including a record 38 world and European premieres with star guests like Eddie Redmayne, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Sir Ben Kingsley, Liam Neeson, Diane Kruger, Til Schweiger, Daniel Brühl and Iris Berben in attendance.

Christian Jungen, Elke Mayer, Matthias Schweighöfer, Ignazio Cassis, Yusra Mardini, Sally El Hosaini, Nathalie Issa, Corine Mauch, Sven Spannekrebs at the Opening Night.

If you didn’t get a chance to watch it, THE SWIMMERS will be available on Netflix from November 23, 2022. Please watch the movie, it will change the way you look at the refugee situation tremendously.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of ZFF, © Sandra Bauknecht / David Biedert Photography
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Ticket to Paradise

The Ocean’s Eleven alums, Julia Roberts and George Clooney, are reunited and are embarking on a new cinematic adventure together. In a 2000s-style rom-com called «Ticket to Paradise», the two of Hollywood sweethearts are playing a divorced couple at odds. The movie is directed by Oliver Parker, who is known for previously writing and directing «Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again».

The film follows Wren Butler, a recent University of Chicago graduate who accompanies her best friend Lily to a post-graduation jaunt to Bali. Lily’s abrupt decision to marry a Balinese local triggers her parents, played by Julia Roberts and George Clooney, to try and stop her from repeating the same mistake they think they made 25 years ago. And to do that, the couple must work together and hatch a plan to disrupt the wedding and probably get it canceled, except, things don’t go as they planned. «Ticket to Paradise» is not one story, but several stories overlapping each other. Wren stays in Bali for the engagement/wedding festivities and, in the process, finds her also own love with a local doctor. To watch the trailer, click here please.

I will be attending the Swiss premiere on Tuesday evening and received a wonderful surprise kit. Follow my Instastories to hear all about it. I am really excited about this movie. The cast is great and the plot sounds so much fun. The film will show in Swiss cinemas starting from September 15, 2022.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht, © Universal
This post is sponsored.  @universalpicturesCH #TicketToParadise #UniversalPicturesCH

Prada and Miu Miu for Elvis

Miuccia Prada has collaborated with award-winning, visionary filmmaker Baz Luhrmann and Oscar-winning costume designer Catherine Martin to create several looks for the main characters in their highly anticipated film, Elvis, designing custom outfits and revisiting garments from the archives of Prada and Miu Miu. This collaboration renews the long-standing relationship between Miuccia Prada, Baz Luhrmann and Catherine Martin, which had already resulted in the creation of exclusive items for The Great Gatsby in 2013, and even earlier in Leonardo DiCaprio’s clothing in the 1996 film Romeo + Juliet – an artistic exchange that perfectly reflects Prada’s multidisciplinary attitude through a creativity that is nourished by a constant dialogue with the universes of art, cinema, and architecture. Elvis will première at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival on May 24th and will be screened in cinemas around the world starting 22nd June and in North America on June 24th.

The film stars Austin Butler as Elvis, Oscar winner Tom Hanks as his enigmatic manager, Colonel Tom Parker, and Olivia DeJonge as Priscilla, and retraces the life and music of Elvis Presley, celebrating his iconic style as well as that of an entire era. The film delves into the complex dynamic between Elvis and his manager over 20 years, from Presley’s rise to fame to his unprecedented stardom, against the backdrop of the evolving cultural landscape and loss of innocence in America. Central to that journey is one of the significant and influential people in Elvis’s life, Priscilla Presley.

«Central to the Elvis narrative is Elvis and Priscilla’s legendary love story. Priscilla Presley’s beauty and iconic style has indelibly marked contemporary culture. Accordingly, it was important for Baz and I that we remain true to this legacy by not merely imitating Ms. Presley’s actual clothes, but that we find a modern way of connecting audiences to her distinctive, history-making style. It was wonderful for both Baz and I to collaborate creatively with Miuccia once again. Immersing ourselves in the Prada and Miu Miu archives with superlatively skilled ateliers, we made the journey to translate the Presleys’ historical clothes into the costumes that would be in the film,» said Catherine Martin.

Starting from the study of Elvis’s and Priscilla’s clothes sources, Prada and Miu Miu found affinities and similarities in their immense archives, giving shape to new creations. The result strongly recalls the years represented in the film, but it is also an expression of the DNAs of the two brands and their histories.

Miu Miu has frequently explored and reinterpreted the Zeitgeist of several decades of the 20th century, according to its own codes. This is the reason why several of its most famous collections easily inspire an evocative endeavor around the style of Priscilla Presley, which was also the result of a personal approach to the fashion of her time. The garments were created from such inspiring pieces as the brocade pantsuit embellished with beads and fringes worn by Priscilla at the opening concert of the evening in Las Vegas.

Prada has also often turned to those years and that cultural landscape – animated by a revolutionary spirit and by a desire for freedom – to offer an original aesthetic interpretation. Through that same notion, several of Priscilla’s authentic outfits were reinvented for the film, such as the tweed dress worn over a mohair sweater with a brown suede jacket worn to the NBC Elvis special.

Along with Elvis’s custom look by Prada – a distinctive plum wine kid mohair suit –, these costumes distill the essence of the characters in the film, silhouettes and recognizable forms that are at once instantly reminiscent of the past while appearing contemporary, underlining their eternal timelessness.

I am really excited to see this movie!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Prada / Warner Bros.
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Meet One of My Favorite Authors: Joël Dicker

During the launch party of PIAGET‘s new POLO S watches in New York City, I had the pleasure to meet one of my favorite authors, award-winning Joël Dicker, as we have been both ambassadors for the brand.

Born in Geneva on June 16, 1985 to a bookseller and a French teacher; he is of both French and Russian descent and has literature in his blood thanks to his parents. Dicker spent his childhood in the French-speaking part of Switzerland. At the age of 19, he decided to move to Paris to take acting classes. A year later, he returned to his hometown to study law at the University of Geneva, obtaining a degree in 2010.

His early beginnings as a writer were not the easiest. However, they show that passion and persistence can overcome all odds. With his first work, the short novel «The Tiger», he participated in a youth literary contest in 2005. In this competition he was disqualified because the main judge presented doubts about his authorship. However, this didn’t stop Dicker and today, he sees it as a milestone in his career.

In 2009, Dicker completed his first novel called «The Final Days of our Fathers», based on the UK Secret Intelligence Service. After not raising interest in any publisher, in 2010 he decided to enroll her in the Prix ​​des Ecrivains Genevois for unpublished works. The writer was the winner of this important award, to finally achieve its publication a year later with Éditions de Fallois.

His style to structure and write a book is different and therefore addictive. Throughout his work, fates and different worlds will cross, and some stories will be parallel all along to meet at the end, as the reader finally will discover the outcome.

Dicker has a very special way to come up with an intoxicating plot mixing shady past and shifting present while spicing it up with suspense and crime. The outcome? Thrilling, delightfully twisted, continually shocking, literary and intelligent novels that all kept me eagerly turning the pages.

My first Dicker book was «The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair» (2012), the story of an American novelist with writer’s block who begins to investigate a murder of which his former university professor is accused. You could say that this thriller took the world by storm. In summer 2013, the title displaced Dan Brown’s Inferno from the top of bestseller lists all over Europe. It has been translated into more than 40 languages ​​and has sold more than 4.000.000 copies worldwide. In addition, the he won the Prix Goncourt des lycéens, the Prix de la Vocation and the Prix du roman from the French Academy. It has also subsequently been made into a 10-part television mini-series with Patrick Dempsey in the leading role.

Dicker’s third novel, «The Baltimore Boys», was released in 2015, followed by his fourth novel, «The Disappearance of Stephanie Mailer» in 2018, which is another one of my favorites by Dicker, a captivating thriller with a killer twist.

In bed with «The Disappearance of Stephanie Mailer».

After releasing his fifth novel «The Enigma of Room 622» in 2020, his fans were waiting impatiently for his new book … It’s now done! «L’Affaire Alaska Sanders» has been hitting the shelves… and I cannot wait to read it!

YOU CAN SHOP HIS BOOKS ONLINE HERE IN SEVERAL LANGUAGES.

LoL, Sandra


Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht / Photo on bed: David Biedert Photography
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The Ultimate Cinema Experience

It’s weekend, time to go to the cinema. In my recent posts linked to the new House of Gucci movie, I shot inside the Pathé cinema in Spreitenbach (click here for the post), which offers you the ultimate theater experience before, during and after your screening.

«Feel like a star!» – that is the motto when you book the VIP concept, unique in Switzerland, at Pathé Spreitenbach for only CHF 49.00 per person. The VIP experience begins with an automatic check-in kiosk. Through the golden elevator you access the VIP Area on the first floor, including a private bar and 3 exclusive rooms, VIP Lounge, VIP Bed and IMAX VIP. You can enjoy tasting soft drinks and unlimited snacks for free. The bar also includes a wide selection of wines and champagne.

From check-in to the end credits, it’s all about exclusivity, privacy, comfort, luxury, and of course, the best of technology with the IMAX VIP room and the Dolby Atmos sound that equips the VIP Lounge and VIP Bed.

VIP LOUNGE ROOM
26 double sofas and 9 individual sofas (how cool is this when you would like to go to the cinema by yourself) in soft velvet to the touch and in trendy colors are available in the VIP Lounge. Each place is equipped with an induction smartphone charger. The first row even offers extra comfort for those who want to stretch their legs. A cabinet for storing your bag, a shelf equipped with elegant tasting glasses and a shelf for storing your snacks and drinks complete the equipment.

VIP BED
In the VIP BED, 11 double beds await you for an unforgettable cinema experience. These exclusively designed beds offer an incredible view of the screen, while ensuring the privacy of the spectators. Each has 2 orthopedic mattresses. The headboard is electrically and individually adjustable. An induction charger for smartphones, as well as two lockers for storing your personal effects complete the equipment of each bed.

IMAX VIP
With unrivaled image quality (DMR-Digital Media Remastering), pure, vibrant and immersive sound, and oversized rooms, the IMAX experience is arguably the best cinema experience possible. Want to take this experience to the next level? Discover IMAX VIP: 16 cocoon seats with adjustable electric backrests and footrests, an induction charger for smartphones, an adjustable tablet, and a locker to store your personal belongings.

KIDS CINEMA
You will love accompanying your children to the cinema, exclusively at Pathé Spreitenbach! The cinema was created by children for children: colorful Fatboy bean bags, a slide and even a ball pool! The brightness, the sound as well as the choice of films also meet the needs of small moviegoers. You can also privatize the Kids Cinema for a fun birthday party for your little one.

Enjoy your weekend!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of Pathé and © David Biedert Photography
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My Look: House of Gucci

This is the look that I would have worn to the premiere of the new House of Gucci movie this week, if I hadn’t been in quarantine. Thank God, we shot the look at the Pathé Cinema in Spreitenbach (where you have beds in one cinema, how cool is that?!) before the event.

I personally cannot wait to see the film myself as I heard so much about it and I would like to form my own opinion. A star-studded cast, fashion from the Gucci archives and a true crime story, this is a match made in heaven for me.

My look: Single-breasted cotton-blend velvet suit jacketicon, flared cotton-blend velvet suit trousers, multicolor silk pussybow blousefur-felt wide-brim trilby hatmetal double G brooch with crystalsdouble wrap ring with tiger headsTiger head ring with black enamelfaux-pearl multi-finger ringpink oversized rhinestone sunglassesicon, and crystal-embellished earrings, all by Gucciblack calf leather lace up Janis pumps by Saint Laurent.

It is one of my favorite Gucci looks ever that is part of fashion history, for more infos on the iconic red velvet suit, click here please.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © David Biedert Photography
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Stella McCartney x Beatles – Get Back

Two years after her first THE BEATLES capsule collectionStella McCartney reveals a new collaboration with the famous band, timed to Peter Jackson’s documentary, «The Beatles: Get Back», which debuted on Disney+ this Thanksgiving weekend. The three-part film chronicles – with cuts from over 60 hours of never-before-seen footage and unheard recordings – covers the making of the Beatles’ 1970 album «Let It Be», which had the working title of «Get Back».

For the occasion, Stella, who is the daughter of Beatles Paul McCartney, developed a limited collection using a mix of iconic and less-familiar Beatles images and graphics, all produced to the same rigorous, sustainable standards as her main line.

It is featuring graphic prints and off-duty silhouettes, the new genderless Get Back capsule celebrates music, community and positive change. Every piece is unisex and is available exclusively in Stella McCartney stores and on Net-à-Portericon.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of Stella McCartney
DISCLOSURE: All products featured on Sandra’s Closet are independently curated by me. However, when you buy something through the retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Gucci Love Parade

GUCCI‘s Creative Director Alessandro Michele will present his new collection, the second one in the centenary year of the House, live in a momentous show along Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles.

Watch the live stream on November 2nd at 8pm PST. Click here to join the livestreaming.

Later this year, Ridley Scott’s highly anticipated «House of Gucci» will be released starring Lady Gaga, Adam Driver, Salma Hayek, Al Pacino, Jeremy Irons and Jared Leto. The film is not directly affiliated with the house but still tied to its legacy nonetheless as it tells the real-life Gucci family with a focus on the murder of Maurizio Gucci (Driver).

Two events that I am very much looking forward to…

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Gucci

Brock Collection x H&M

In January, I wrote about the huge impact the Netflix series Bridgerton has on fashion (for the previous outfit post, click here). All of a sudden, corsets, rushed floral dresses, empire lines are all back in the game. The series’ costume with all of their fanciful and over-the-top looks have given us a sweet and much-needed outfit inspiration.

Here is the new H&M collaboration that celebrates those kind of looks. In a whimsical collection made from more sustainable materials, LA-based Brock Collection brings their signature laid-back charm to thoughtfully crafted romantic silhouettes.

Think country florals, corset tops and dreamy ruffles, effortlessly paired with classic denim for a modern touch. All made from more sustainable materials like organic linen, organic cotton, recycled cotton, recycled polyester and Tencel™ Lyocell.

«Brock Collection has always been about connecting the threads between uptown polish paired with a down-to-earth ease, which we are so happy to bring to a new audience. Each piece in the collection is special and carries a certain romantic charm, but is totally effortless,» says Laura Vassar and Kristopher Brock, Designers and Co-Founders of Brock Collection. The pair met in New York City while attending Parsons School of Design and after founding the brand in 2014, relocated to Los Angeles. Since then their emphasis on craft and cut and love of vintage references has gained a cult following.

«We’re thrilled to be collaborating with Brock Collection, who are well-known for their luxe craftsmanship, impeccable fits and structures, and have quite the celebrity following. But there’s also beauty in the fact that their designs always feel down-to-earth, thoughtful and easy to wear — I believe that’s the key to their success. We want to celebrate romance and make it accessible to the many. By adding more sustainable materials, it creates for a collaboration I hope our customers around the world will fall in love with,» says Maria Östblom, Head of Design at H&M.

Brock Collection x H&M is available now in Europe in selected stores and online. It will launch in the US and Canada on June 24, 2021.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Brock Collection / H&M, Netflix
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Miu Miu Famous Cats

Miu Miu Famous Cats is a collection of five t-shirts, each carrying a film-still printed with different feline characters. Multi-faceted and free-spirited, these gorgeous creatures may be courageous, cowardly, aloof, playful, loving and at times, even mean.

The cats playing starring roles and featured in the collection include;
Jakethe extra-terrestrial cat from the 1978 American sci-fi comedy, The Cat From Outer Space. When forced to land his spaceship on earth, he leads various humans on a series of riotous escapades.

Jonesythe mouse-chasing ginger cat resident on the ill-fated USCSS Nostromo in the 1979 blockbuster, Alien. With Ellen Ripley, he is the mission’s only survivor.

Three talking cats sit on Chibi-Usa’s shoulders from Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon, broadcasted Japanese animation series since 1992. Luna, Artemis and their daughter, Diana, are companions to the eponymous Sailor Guardians.

The nameless cat in Francis Ford Coppola’s The Godfather was found wandering around the movie set, and was picked up and placed – impromptu – on Marlon Brando’s knee. His purring further obscured the actor’s famously muffled dialogue.

Finally, with her long lashes and crimson pout, Toodles Galore, from Hanna Barbera’s Tom & Jerry, reduces hapless Tom to a gibbering wreck every time he encounters her. And this despite the fact she never makes a sound.

Launching in March, t-shirts are available in plain white cotton and stills are printed alongside text contextualising their significance in big and small screen culture.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Miu Miu