Baz Luhrmann goes Gatsby on Faena House

Jan.January 01, 2014 07:00 AM
From left: Alan Faena and Baz Luhrmann

From left: Alan Faena and Baz Luhrmann

With potential neighbors like Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein and Apollo Global Management co-founder Leon Black, the elaborate Faena House in Miami Beach is luxurious enough for Jay Gatsby himself.

Or at least for his filmmaker.

Acclaimed director Baz Luhrmann put the skills he used in creating last year’s epic version of “The Great Gatsby” to new use by filming a grandiose video for developer Alan Faena. Luhrmann, an Oscar nominee, and his Academy Award–winning costume designer wife Catherine Martin teamed up with Faena, an Argentine known for redeveloping a section of Buenos Aires, on the repositioning of the former Saxony Hotel as part of a larger mixed-use development.

Luhrmann told TRD he learned of the project from billionaire investor Len Blavatnik while in France last year for the premiere of “Gatsby” at the Cannes Film Festival. He met Faena soon afterward in Buenos Aires. “From the moment Catherine and I met Alan Faena and his partner Ximena, we fell in love with them,” Luhrmann said in a statement, adding they share a “sensibility—a romance and a passion to create worlds for people to escape into.”

Blankfein and Black are reportedly among the early buyers at the $1 billion complex, which will include an elaborate retail and arts center, in addition to the 19-story condo.

The three-minute video, shot in November and produced by New York–based Tandem Pictures, features sweeping cinematography of the area using models of the 47-unit Faena House, along with moody close-ups of Luhrmann and Faena as they discuss the developer’s vision for transforming the mid-Beach section of Miami Beach.

The video premiered during the annual Art Basel Miami Beach last month. Its debut to the broader industry was exclusively featured on TRD’s South Florida website.

Luhrmann and Martin were also part of an A-list dinner at the Faena site during Art Basel. The dinner attracted Robert Futterman, along with other real estate heavyweights. Major New York–based players like Douglas Elliman chairman Howard Lorber were spotted at Art Basel, too. No word on whether he got a peek at the Luhrmann video.


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