Pirelli 2005 post-mortem
So, is the calendar any good?
The international response so far was been lukewarm - other than Naomi and Adriana Lima, the mods are little known and don't show much that may impress people interested in somewhat saucy calendars.
Demarchelier now works for Conde Nast, inc US Vogue, and represents the "mass market" face of hip NYC modelling - if you look at the model selection, you'll see that whoever picked the girls followed "hip in NYC" rankings blindly, leaving out the more "edgy" girls that Meisel and his fellow travellers like to work with. Throw in a couple of Ralph Lauren models, and you get the idea.
The execution is predictably less than thrilling - Isabeli (November) looked far more interesting in the 2003 calendar, shot by Bruce Weber in Italy. Naomi C (December) was underutilized and didn't show up for the calendar launch in Rio, a disaster in international PR terms. Adriana Lima IMO is in the calendar only because of the relation between Pirelli and TIM Italia - after all, TIM Brazil's model contest winner, Valeria Bohm, got a calendar place (in the last page) as the prize. I suspect Naomi was supposed to get the cover, but it was given to Adriana instead. If Demarchelier and Co wanted to use more credible "Ipanema girls", they could have gone with mods like Fernada Tavares, Michelle Alves, Ana Beatriz, Leticia Birkheuer, Ana Hickmann, etc - Liliane F is pretty but curveless, and hardly the type that would turn heads in any beach, much less a Brazilian one. Even the Adriana photos (cover and April) are ho-hum. Leticia and Raquel Zimmermann could have been featured, since they also satisfy the "ranking" criteria. Somebody should show Demarchelier the Rosa Cha ads, with Raquel in bikini.
The casting, allegedly done by a lady who also works for VS, reflected NYC model agency biz politics and fell far sort of what the public would expect from an "Ipanema girl" theme. Some of the casting choices didn't work at all - Volodina isn't in any of the "month" pages, and in the pic where she is together with J Stegner, she is cropped below the waist - she has an obvious cellulite problem that apparently could not be retouched. Julia Stegner (January and July) gets two month pages, for no apparent reason. Marija Vujovic, reportedly the niece of the Montenegrin president (if they mean Djukanovic, that's the guy who is wanted for smuggling and mafia links by Italian judges, a small detail that the US media avoid mentioning since he is a dependable "yesman") offers a good view of her butt, which may be the most interesting feature of the calendar. Filippa (June) and Valentina (September) represent R Lauren, with Valentina appearing in more pages than anyone else - September and three more, for a total of four out of 22. Looks like she has a bright future with RL !!! Also present are Diana Dondoe (October) who can look a lot better than this, Michelle Buswell, who is compatible with the calendar theme but could use a boob job, while Erin Wasson (March) doesn't show anything that would interest (saucy) calendar fans - but she said that she did enjoy her Rio vacation.
Overall, dodgy model selection for such a theme and poor photography selection for a calendar shoot (Demarchelier has shown he can do much better) where pleasing NYC agency model bosses seemed to be more important - unless you are one of those longing for a chance to see Julia Stegner's nipples, you'll probably be disappointed.
Demarchelier autographs copies of the 2005 Pirelli calendar in Rio