Working in the NYC fashion industry, while exhilarating, revealed many of the problematic practices in the industry. Why is the industry run by unpaid interns? Why does the person behind the creation become a marketable product themself? Why is the salability of a product more important than the creative impulse that lies behind it?
For my senior film thesis, I created a mockumentary to showcase some of these issues by placing various people from the industry into one room. The story is structured around a photo shoot for a fictional, famous influencer Eliza (@thereal_Eliza). As everyone – the photographer, the journalist, unpaid interns, and the influencer – slowly arrive to set, tension begins to rise, until finally, all hell breaks loose when an exposé is released during the shoot revealing Eliza as a complete fraud.
This story deals with many crucial questions regarding the dominance of influencers – from the authenticity of an online persona to the growth of cancel culture.