Emily In Paris season 1 aired during a time when people were confined in their homes and a visual escape to Paris was a welcome distraction. Although the jury on the rose-tinted reality of the show is still out – I personally compartmentalised it as a feel-good show and didn’t look at it from the lens of a fashion or pop-culture critic. Some loved it, some hated it, but everybody watched it – making it one the most popular shows on Netflix in 2020. Creator of the show, Darren Star, with Lily Collins as one of the producers is all set to release the second season with a larger cast and an even more intriguing plot line.
Amongst the few talked-about subjects from the show was its OTT fashion and conversation around diversity. In an exclusive conversation with ELLE, actor-producer of the show Lily Collins and lead cast member Ashley Park address the matter in question and shed light on all the things fans should looks forward to in the new season.
ELLE: In the 1st Season, we saw Emily’s style was heavily influenced by her American aesthetic, will there be sartorial evolution in season 2?
Lily Collins: She stays true to who she is aesthetically as well as intentionally but, as anyone would, she starts to adapt to new trends and explore the fashion surrounding her. Emily still loves colours, prints, textures, and shapes this season, but she’s a little bit more settled in who she is here in Paris. We’ve incorporated more purples, violets, yellows, chartreuses — bold colours, but nothing too overwhelming. We referenced Audrey Hepburn in the first season, but in this season we wanted to ease our way into referencing French icons. Early on we were inspired by Grace Kelly, an American who famously became Princess Grace of Monaco, and we also reference Brigitte Bardot in one key sequence this season. Patricia Field and Marylin Fitoussi spend hours and hours with me going over photos and sketches and doing fittings. Pat always says, “I just want to smile. I love happy fashion.” And that’s what Emily’s wardrobe is. It’s a happy fashion.
ELLE: While Emily’s Parisian Experience is lensed on the show, did you discover anything new about the city of love while filming the series?
LC: We wanted to explore different sides of Paris both in front of and behind the camera. Honestly, this city just keeps on giving. We have so many places left to explore. Filming in Saint-Tropez was so much fun and was the best way to start the season off. It was stunning and truly felt like going to summer camp every single day. The entire cast and crew were so genuinely grateful to be there. We all felt a strong sense of camaraderie again right away.
ELLE: As a lead actor and producer on the show, what role did you play in making the show more inclusive and diverse in season 2?
LC: We all found it empowering to have the opportunity to have a second season and to have 10 episodes to explore the fabric of the city that is Paris in detail. This includes the French language, types of places as well as the different kinds of people that you meet – which of course meant involving a diverse group of people behind the scenes as well as in front of the camera. Personally, this is very important to me, as well as the other creators of the show. Again, it’s a show about a girl who is a fish out of the water and the 1st season was all setting the tone about who this person is and the people she’s going to meet. With the second season, we dive deeper into the other characters and their storylines, inviting new characters to shine on-screen and I am thrilled to see how that unfolds.
ELLE: Tell us about Mindy’s character trajectory in season 2 and how different will it be from season 1?
Ashley Park: Towards the end of season 1, Mindy moves in with Emily and is all set to pursue her career as a musician – even if that means singing as an MC at a drag club twice a week. From living in Paris with no plan, Mindy’s life will now change and there will be many emotional, personal and professional developments through which she will constantly lean on Emily, just like Emily leaned on her in the previous season.
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