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Karl Lagerfeld, the 'Fashion Pope' in TV documentary

After the 2007 documentary, “Lagerfeld Confidential” directed by Rodolphe Marconi that revealed the life of Karl Lagerfeld, the German designer is going to be the star in another documentary, called ‘Mode Als Relgion’ (Fashion as Religion).

Lagerfeld has earned a number of nicknames, some good and some bad, in his long career, but from ‘Kaiser’ to "Fashion Pope" has to be a first, even if he is one of the fashion forces of this century.

This new four hour TV documentary that will be aired in Germany on September 7th, was realized by TV journalist Martina Neuen, who’s controversial idea is to compare fashion to religion.

According to Neuen, who followed Lagerfeld forover 16 months, fashion has the 'same age-old rituals, system of beliefs and sense of community as a religion', and that magazines are bibles, the models are angels and consumers are followers, and the designer thinks himself as a “fashion missionary.”

“He’s the most impressive person I’ve ever met,” Neuen told WWD. “He’s a true individual, and there’s a lightness of being around him”.

The journalist also got a neurologist to try to prove that the brains of a Catholic priest and that of a fashionista have identical emotional responses to their respective 'religions'.

Luckily for Neuen, the documentary is in a video medium, or it would probably end up on the Vatican’s Index Librorum Prohibitorum - and black listed as blasphemous.

Talking about the documentary - that will see interviews with Claudia Schiffer, Linda Evangelista, Inès de la Fressange, Suzy Menkes, Christiane Arp, Gerhard Steidl, Diane Kruger, Sarah Jessica Parker and Milla Jovovich - the journalist said, "It cannot offer you redemption or anything eternal. It's a bit tongue-in-cheek."

Since Lagerfeld has been likened to a ‘pope’, he also had something to say on several popes: “The only pope I thought was chic was Pius XII. Even though he may not be remembered for his popularity, I thought he was elegant. And Pope John XXIII was the most charismatic; you can keep all the others.

Evidently the fashion designer wasn’t impressed with Pope Benedict XVI’s red Prada shoes.

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