The Evolution of ‘Anna Wintour’s Party’

NYT fashion critic Vanessa Friedman bears down on Vogue EIC's Met Gala fundraising wizardry.

VogueSept2013_CoverWhile the Daily News explored the Obama traffic jam angle and Page Six honed in on a Smartphone use directive, the New York Times has touched in its Met Gala Sunday A1 lead-up piece on an intriguing Hollywood angle.

CAA’s Bryan Lourd tells fashion critic Vanessa Friedman that a Vogue cover is the “gold standard” to which a great many A-list actresses still aspire to. The reporter meanwhile notes that every Tinseltown actress who’s co-hosted the Met Gala alongside Wintour, including Jennifer Lawrence this year, has graced the cover of the magazine:

By 1999, Ms. Wintour had become, as she remains, the gala’s de facto co-host, and her leadership coincided with the shift in Vogue covers from model-based images to celebrities. In 1993, there were three celebrity Vogue covers; by 1998, there were seven, and in 2002, there were 10.

The gala’s guest list was undergoing a similar transformation. Starting in 2003, celebrities served as a hosts of the Met ball or the dance after-party, which no longer exists, every year, including Nicole Kidman in 2003 and 2005 (seven Vogue covers), Sienna Miller in 2006 (four covers), and Carey Mulligan in 2012 (three covers, including this month’s).

Though Hildy Kuryk, Vogue’s director of communications, is quick to point out that not every cover model is a host of the ball, it is also true that every female Hollywood star who has served as a host has been on the cover of Vogue.

VogueUKNovember2012Another intriguing Tinseltown flavor this year is China: Through the Looking Glass, a documentary about the 2015 Met Gala and associated exhibit for which Condé Nast has partnered with Relativity Media. The film is being directed by Andrew Rossi, who previously made the New York Times doc Page One.

Wintour and Lawrence will preside over Monday night’s event alongside host Silas Chou and fellow co-hosts Wendi Murdoch, Marissa Mayer and Chinese actress Gong Li.
[Pictured: Lawrence’s September 2013 U.S. Vogue and November 2012 UK Vogue covers]