Fashion maven Iris Apfel on initially rejecting Albert Maysles’ documentary proposal

Iris Apfel answers questions for the audience after the screening of the documentary "Iris"




Iris Apfel made a surprise appearance at the Stonzek Theater for the late screening of “Iris”, late filmmaker Albert Maysles’ documentary of her life and daily routine as a fashion and haute couture authority, particularly in the chic setting of Manhattan. After the screening, she spoke to press and audience about meeting Albert Maysles, and initially rejecting his proposal to make a documentary about her life.


The film community lost one of its greatest with the passing of Albert Maysles. Born in 1926, he produced some of the best documentaries, such as Salesman (1968), Gimme Shelter (1970) and Grey Gardens (1975). Many of his projects were joint collaborations with his brother David, also a director and producer, who passed away in January, 1987. Maysles last completed project was the sassy documentary on fashion personality and icon, Iris Apfel, finished before his death in March 2015. Initially, Apfel had said no to Maysles proposal on shadowing her daily life with a camera crew to make a documentary on her life and her everyday affairs as a bona fide fashion celebrity. “I have nothing to sell, and I have no ego problems” Apfel said at a press conference and screening that took place at the Stonzek Theater in Lake Worth, Florida on June 15th. “So I said no, and that was that”. However, one of Iris’ closest friends, Bergdorf-Goodman’s Senior VP Linda Fargo, was the one who ultimately convince Apfel to listen to Maysle’s proposal. “What the hell is wrong with you?” Apfel relates about her conversation with Fargo. “Most people would kill for a still photograph by Albert Maysles and he wants to do a documentary? And you have the unmitigated gall to say no?” Fortunately, Maysles was still interested, and invited Iris to go to Harlem and meet his crew.

The fact that “Iris” was Maysles’ last completed film makes it even more valuable for fans of his work. With a surprising upbeat rock and jazz infused soundtrack, “Iris” is as inspiring as the lady herself. With a witty sense of humor and a youthful spirit that would put women half her age to shame, “Iris is a must-see for anyone who loves fashion, life, and a carefree spirit.


For the complete audio and interview on Iris Apfel’s Stonzek Theater appearance and screening, click here:

Check out the trailer for Iris here:

About ADRIANA DELGADO 68 Articles
Art Film File is a site for cinephiles ,who like myself, have a deep respect, love, and admiration for independent and foreign films of every era. Readers who follow Art Film File are for the most part adverse to the "Hollywood Blockbuster" theorem (although there are many good ones out there) showing instead a strong inclination to connect with films that explore topics such as life, identity and philosophy without necessarily following a neat studio-oriented narrative. In the past, much like it is now, many independent and foreign films get done many times with countless challenges. Small budgets, little or no outside funding and absence of willing distributors are some of the problems that many American and foreign independent filmmakers face regularly. Art Film File acts as a conduit in bringing these films, past and present, to the public's attention. Art Film File is also a site that displays detailed reviews about films they haven't seen as well as for films they have seen and wish to share their own views. I plan to include interviews with filmmakers and actors of indie and foreign films in addition to articles depicting topics of interest for readers who already follow Art Film File and for those waiting to discover it. Adriana Delgado Founder and Blog Manager of Art Film File

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