SASHA CHARNIN MORRISON & JADE HOBSON

SASHA CHARNIN MORRISON & JADE HOBSON

FADE IN:

INT. THE LION, GREENWICH VILLAGE, NEW YORK CITY — AFTERNOON

The dining room inside The Lion, a clubby restaurant in Manhattan, is set for dinner service. Stemware and silverware are arranged perfectly atop crisp white linens that cover intimately arranged tables. Artwork hangs salon-style on the walls beneath a soaring vaulted ceiling.

CUT TO:

SASHA CHARNIN MORRISON enters with her step-mother, JADE HOBSON. They walk to a table by a fireplace with an ornate marble mantel. A waiter appears and takes their order. Minutes later, he returns, and sets a cup of tea and a bottle of water on the table.

SASHA
I was supposed to be in show business. But you met my dad [Martin Charnin], and then I met you. He introduced us on the set of a Vogue shoot. I still remember what I wore [laughs].

JADE
You do?

SASHA
It’s really embarrassing. I wore this white Parachute thermal mini dress — with shoulder pads — and hot pink slingback heels from Sacha London. Smashing in 1977 when you’re 12, about to be 13. Now? Hideous!

JADE
Wow.

SASHA
I always think it’s funny when I ask celebrities what they’re wearing and they reply, “I don’t know.” They know. You were wearing a white blouse, khakis, and ballet slippers. And as soon as I saw what you had on, I only wanted to wear khakis and ballet slippers — that’s how influenced I was by you.

JADE
That’s funny. It reminds me of when Vera Wang first came to Vogue, to be Polly Mellen’s assistant. She showed up in a little white Yves Saint Laurent dress with a pleated skirt, high heels, and freshly manicured red nails. Polly said, “We’re going on a sitting today. Go home and change! Right now.” That was the end of that.

SASHA
I remember visiting you in the Vogue fashion closet after we met on set. My eyes bugged out of my head and I thought, ‘Whatever this is, it’s what I’m going to do.”

JADE
I felt so guilty.

SASHA
Why?!

JADE
Because your father thought show business was the only business. He thought you were so talented — which you are — and so terrific. I think he was very upset when you chose fashion. Or amused. I’m not sure.

SASHA
I think he was amused, because he loves it, too. He may be the only straight guy I know who loves to shop, and who can actually can shop as long as I can [laughs].

JADE
I don’t really like to shop.

SASHA
Which is so crazy!

JADE
I know. I think it’s because I started at Vogue as an accessories editor [before becoming Creative Director] and there was always so much stuff.

SASHA
I’m sure. But visiting your office, with all those major people milling about, was so dazzling.

JADE
I remember my first interview with Diana Vreeland. I sat across from her at her black lacquer desk. A Rigaud candle was lit, and a humidifier in the middle of the room was setting off puffs of smoke that floated above her leopard rug. “Jade,” she said. “At Vogue, you learn to never take no for an answer. There’s always a way to get something done. Short of death…”

SASHA
You did that incredible editorial with [photographer] Chris van Wangenheim and the helicopter. It’s like one of the most important shoots of all time [JADE laughs].

JADE
Gia [Carangi] was one of the models. We were out West, and Chris was looking for a dry riverbed. He didn’t find anything after a day and a half of scouting, so he rented a helicopter to get a better look at the land. We ended up using it in the shoot, which was great.

SASHA
The photo shoots you used to do would go on for days.

JADE
Sometimes Irving Penn would take two days to photograph one still life [laughs]. It was fascinating to watch him, but I never had the patience for a shoot like that. A cover try was always the fastest because Avedon did almost all of them. We’d be in and out of his studio in a couple of hours.

SASHA
Another great shoot of yours was Daryl Hannah photographed by Helmut Newton in Malibu. I mean, those names!

JADE
We would use celebrities, but only if they were really big or in the news at the time.

SASHA
We photographed huge stars at Us Weekly [laughs]. Two words: Real Housewives. Or Kim Kardashian, who you actually have a connection to that I don’t think you know about.

JADE
I do? No way.

SASHA
Yes!

JADE
What’s that [laughs]?

SASHA
Kim took that picture of herself with her hair in a towel and a big ring on her hand — she was referencing the shoot you did with Elizabeth Taylor and Wayne Mazur. I asked you for a funny quote when the picture came out and you said, “Kim doesn’t come anywhere close,” or something like that. See, it’s all linked [laughs].

JADE
Oh my god.

SASHA
At first, seeing Kim — Us Weekly’s cover girl for years — on the cover of Vogue was jarring. But then it was fascinating. That was a risk, but an admirable one. It was one of those pop culture moments that I love.

JADE
I thought it was mediocrity all around.

SASHA
Well now I have to talk about Snooki.

JADE
Is she a real person?

SASHA
Yes [laughs].
You did covers with people like Elizabeth Taylor, and I have “OMG! I’m pregnant!” with Snooki.
That was a big seller. In Us Weekly’s world, it was groundbreaking news.

JADE
That was one reason why working with you at Mirabella was so wonderful. You were so full of information on what was going on and where it was happening.

SASHA
Mirabella was great. It was basically a startup. People would take on responsibilities even though they had no idea what they were doing.

JADE
We didn’t have a copy machine, or even a phone, at first [laughs].

SASHA
And nobody remembers, but that magazine was blacklisted by photographers, hair stylists, models —

JADE
Anyone who worked for Condé Nast or Vogue was not working for Mirabella.

SASHA
They couldn’t because they were threatened. And not in a joking way. It was serious. That was a scary time.

JADE
It was hard, but great in a way because it forced us to find a whole new pool of talent, like the photographers Elliott Erwitt — who shot the great shoes and dogs story — Bruce Davidson, and Michael O’Neill.

SASHA
I did the booking —

JADE
And you danced on tables.

SASHA
And I wore wigs.

JADE
And you sang a lot.

SASHA
We would get there early and leave late, but it didn’t matter because we knew we were all a part of this interesting new adventure.

JADE
It was so much fun. I miss that time with you. And I love you a lot.

SASHA
Aw! Thank you. I love you, too.

CREDITS

Photography byMolly Hodson

Conversation moderated byAnthony Rotunno

Special thanksTHE LION

Sasha Charnin Morrison is an author, stylist, and brand consultant who has worked as a fashion director at Seventeen, Harper’s Bazaar, Allure, and Us Weekly.
Jade Hobson has worked as a creative director at Vogue, Mirabella, and New York, and as a fashion editor at large at Town & Country.

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