September 2 2014

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casting a spell


Ever wonder how Sasha P. ended up on the Prada runway? A good casting is crucial to a show’s look and feel and affects how a designer’s message is received. We spoke to three of the busiest casting directors in New York to get their thoughts on the upcoming shows and the state of the industry. Of course, they all had different opinions. Meet Douglas Perrett, Massimo Cuviello, and Daniel Peddle.

Is there a certain look that’s dominating right now?
Perrett: "It’s all about the Americans—the state-fair look is huge right now. Scouts have stopped traveling to Eastern Europe and have discovered the Midwest."
Cuviello: "There’s been a major turn to a classic beauty—something alluring, but still fresh and young."
Peddle: "A more cerebral look is beginning to surface. A young woman with a bright inner being, who doesn’t stare blankly but returns your gaze with an inquisitive look of her own."

Has the weight debate changed anything?
Perrett: "No real changes have been made. There will be a couple girls with hips at an agency, but the truth is designers need girls to fill size 0 clothing."
Cuviello: "The health and well-being of the models are always a concern for agents and designers. The CFDA has resources in place for anyone that needs them."
Peddle: "The entire industry is really sensitive to the issue, and they do want to promote an image of health and vitality. Agencies in particular have been especially quick to respond to this."

Are the runways more culturally diverse than in years past?
Perrett: "Yes and no. There are girls like Chanel Iman who are becoming crossover successes, and there’s been a big Asian invasion in shows and editorials. But at the same time it’s extremely difficult to break through in this business as a minority."
Cuviello: "There is more ethnic diversity in our culture as a whole. I wouldn’t say it’s easier for an ethnic girl to book a job now versus five years ago, but at the same time agencies are representing more girls of color and thus there are more available."
Peddle: "Young designers are really aware of how important diversity is on the runway, and slowly but surely it’s becoming a more diverse place."
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