The Long-Awaited John Galliano Documentary Will Start Streaming In Canada This Month

The Long Awaited John Galliano Documentary Will Start Streaming In Canada This Month
ABOVE: Galliano returns to Dior archive for the first time since 2011 (Photo: David Harriman)

“I am going to tell you everything,” says John Galliano mere minutes into High & Low: John Galliano, the much talked about documentary on the designer from Academy Award-winning director Kevin Macdonald. After brief screenings in theatres across the globe, Canadian fashion fans will finally have the chance to watch the film, which wrestles with the highlights — and lowlights — of Galliano’s controversial career, when it starts streaming exclusively on MUBI on Friday, April 26, 2024.

Galliano was widely recognized as one of the most successful and talented fashion designers of the 1990s and 2000s. However, his career abruptly ended when he was caught on video in 2011 hurling racist and antisemitic insults at Café La Perle in Paris’s fashionable and historically Jewish Marais district. The release of the video sent shockwaves through the fashion world and prompted Dior to sack their star designer, saying his behaviour and language was “particularly odious.”

Macdonald, whose previous films include the fiction features The Last King of Scotland and State of Play, and whose documentaries include Touching the Void and Whitney, chooses to open the Galliano documentary with a clip from the now notorious phone footage of the drunken designer slurring racist and antisemitic taunts at a group of women in the Paris bar before exploring the hows and whys of his actions. Throughout 116-minutes the film looks at Galliano’s rough upbringing in south London in the ’60s with his Spanish and Portuguese parents, his much-hailed 10-look graduating collection, Les Incroyables, from the famed Central Saint Martins art school, as well as his ascent with his own label and with the Christian Dior label as well as his subsequent firing from both labels and the ensuing court case in Paris following his outbursts.

“It was a disgusting thing, a foul thing, that I did,” Galliano says in the film. “It was just horrific.”

The film candidly investigates Galliano’s struggles with addiction and the industry pressure the designer faced along the way and also explores his slowly timed renascent with his temporary residency with Oscar De La Renta (brokered by Vogue editor-in-chief, Condé Nast chief content officer and long-time supporter of Galliano, Anna Wintour) as well as his more recent work with French luxury fashion house Maison Margiela.

High & Low: John Galliano features extensive interviews with Galliano (the interviews with the designer were conducted over six days, for four or five hours per day, and with no minder or PR present) alongside conversations with Naomi Campbell, Kate Moss, Anna Wintour, Edward Enninful, Bernard Arnault, Charlize Theron, Penélope Cruz, Amanda Harlech, and Rabbi Barry Marcus.

The Long Awaited John Galliano Documentary Will Start Streaming In Canada This Month
ABOVE stills from High & Low: John Galliano (clockwise): Galliano in the doorway of his home / Anna Wintour / Naomi Campbell

Galliano’s genius – and genius is a word that is mentioned often by the film’s interviewees – lay in his ability to create drama on the runway and the viewer is reminded of this as the film showcases a range of breathtaking archive footage of the haute couture and high-fashion designs shown on the runway for his own label and for Dior.

“He is fashion,” says one interviewee in the film. “John is a good metaphor.”

“John knows he will never be forgiven by everybody,” Macdonald told Vogue recently when discussing the film. “He wants to be understood—to have the opportunity to explain as far as he can what happened. And he wants his case to serve as a warning. But he was also concerned not to make his story too depressing. At the end, he says his story isn’t actually depressing, because he has come out of everything with a renewed life and a renewed sense of vigor and creativity.”

Kevin Macdonald’s thought-provoking High & Low – John Galliano will be available to stream exclusively on MUBI in Canada from Friday, April 26, 2024. Visit for more information.

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Tags: Anna Wintour, Christian Dior, Dior, documentary, John Galliano, MUBI, top story, topstory

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